An unseasonably cold pattern across the eastern United States that will make Mother’s Day feel colder than Christmas in some locations has left many residents wondering when springtime warmth is due to return. Although there are several more days of chilly and wintry conditions ahead, Accure weather meteorologists say there’s hope on the horizon for fans of warm weather.
Following a Mother’s Day weekend storm bringing record cold and snow to portions of the Northeast, another weak storm will be right on its heels as it races across the northern Plains and into the Northeast.
Snow fell Saturday across portions of North Daktoa and Minnesota, places that missed out on snowfall from the first storm at the end of last week. Mixed rain and snow showers will then shift through the Great Lakes and Northeast Sunday and Monday.
“Whether some locales get rain or snow showers, or both, will largely depend on the timing of the storm moving through that area,” said Accure weather Senior Meteorologist Bill Deger. “Showers that occur from the midday through the later afternoon hours will be largely rain, while showers that occur later at night and in the wee hours of the morning have the best chance of being all snow.”
A few slushy inches fell over North Dakota and Minnesota on Saturday night, but as the storm shifts east Sunday and Monday, only some of the highest elevations in the Great Lakes and Northeast are expected to receive a light accumulation.
“Most in the Great Lakes and Northeast will see it as another round of crummy, cloudy, cold and clammy weather, first for the Great Lakes Sunday then for the Northeast Monday,” Deger added.
After this storm moves off the New England coast on Monday, a slow slog back to normal will occur through the week from the northern Plains through the East.
“Monday and Tuesday morning, the threat of frosts and freezes will be widespread again from the northern Plains to the Northeast,” Tyler Roys, Accure weather forecaster, said.
Residents will need to continue to protect sensitive vegetation each night. Some flowering fruit trees won’t be able to survive the harsh cold snap.
Wednesday through the end of the week, the well-below-average temperatures will gradually erode from southwest to northeast.
A limiting factor to the warmup will be an active storm track. Rounds of clouds and wet weather from the Plains through much of the East will keep temperatures from rising further and faster.
“Much of the central and northern Plains into the Northeast will still be 6-12 degrees below normal through Thursday,” Roys said.
Some stubborn pockets of temperatures 10-20 below normal will even persist into Wednesday and Thursday where thick clouds and rain prevent any sunshine as the warmth tries to advance north and east.
In areas that do get sunshine, temperatures can spike quickly. The difference between areas where rain is falling and where the sun is out will be drastic next week.
Areas stuck in the clouds and rain during the day can remain in the 40s, while areas not far away that get dry weather and a little sunshine will surge back into the upper 50s and 60s.
Farther south, spring will return a little sooner. Temperatures are expected to climb slightly above normal by Thursday from portions of the central and southern Plains to the Southeast.
It will likely take until Friday and into the weekend for areas farther north, such as the upper Great Lakes into New England, to get back to near-average temperatures for this time of the year.
“Still, after the recent cold, even just 5 degrees below normal is going to feel very nice if coupled with a dry day and some sunshine in mid-May,” AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Brett Anderson said.
Frequent rounds of wet weather, with above-average precipitation in many locations, have suppressed temperatures below normal in the Northeast. Since the start of April, the average temperature has been held more than 2 degrees below normal in places like New York City and Philadelphia.
Even larger departures below normal have been experienced across some interior portions of the region, with the average temperature since April 1 falling nearly 4 degrees below average in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and just over 3 degrees lower than normal in Syracuse, New York.
The extreme pattern looks to ease for the latter half of May, with most of the nation not expected to stray too far from normal.