Thunderstorms swept into the area Monday night, bringing with them gusty winds, small hail and always dangerous cloud-to-ground lightening. All showers and leftover storms will slip off the coast Tuesday, allowing for a return to sunshine and pleasantly mild temperatures.
The return of the Big Chill
On Wednesday, a modified polar front will lead to afternoon showers and scattered storms. Temperatures will still be in the 60s, however unseasonably cold air will greet you Thursday as temperatures by day hover in the middle 50s.
Some parts of the Philadelphia region could be hit with frost either Friday or Saturday morning as the thermometer falls back into the winter-like 30s. How widespread will the frost be? It will depend on the amount of cloud cover and a light or near calm wind. Clear and calm conditions are the best case scenario for widespread frost.
This is the time of the year when your throw your arms up and yell, “I’m as mad as hell and I’m not going to take this anymore!!!” (That’s the famous quote from the 1976 movie Network about a former anchor’s ravings over the media’s quest for profits.) Hmm, I think director Sidney Lumet was on to something.
Back to weather. Yes, we do have a chance of some wet snow this evening, but this will be solely confined across the distant northern and western suburbs. The Lehigh Valley and the Poconos could pick up an inch or two in the highest elevations.
Most of the region, including the city, will see a cold rain arriving during the afternoon and continuing through the evening rush. I’m also including a few scattered thunderstorms across extreme South Jersey and Delaware.
Last month was the third coldest February on record and it tied for fourth place as one of the coldest months ever in Northeastern Pennsylvania.
The average temperature last month was 17.5 degrees as recorded by the National Weather Service at the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport.
January 1918 was just as cold.
Only two other Februaries locally have been colder since 1901, when record-keeping started: February 1934 with an average temperature of 15.4 degrees and February 1979 with an average temp of 15.9 degrees.
Philadelphians will wake up Thursday to the winter’s first single-digit day. At 4 a.m. the temperature was expected to plunge to 9 degrees. And AccuWeather was calling for a “Real-Feel” temperature of -14 degrees.
But hang in there.
“It will be getting warmer. Or less cold,” said Gary Szatkowski, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Mount Holly, N.J. “I don’t know if 37 will feel warm. But it will feel less cold.”
To get to 37 degrees – Sunday’s expected high – the city first needs to bear a high of 20 degrees Thursday, 34 degrees Friday, and 25 degrees Saturday.
There will be snow and rain and everything in between.
The big unknown is how much of each.
Northeast Pennsylvania is under a winter storm warning through Thursday morning as a system developing along the mid-Atlantic coast pushes inland today with the potential for significant snow, sleet and freezing rain.
The National Weather Service said total snow accumulations could hit eight to 12 inches, with the higher amounts in the higher terrain and less in the valleys.
The Philadelphia region could see periods of snow and sleet today, forecasters are warning.
The National Weather Service says a mix of rain, snow and sleet is likely for the area through early afternoon. The precipitation should then transition to rain and sleet and eventually just rain by late afternoon, the weather service said.
Any snow is most likely between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. and less than an inch is expected. Any accumulation should be limited to grassy areas and non-paved surfaced. Sleet is most likely to hit the region from early to mid-afternoon.
You may be reading this while wearing summer-ish shorts and a T-shirt, or standing in comfortable weather in your driveway after getting your paper.
But here’s a news flash — winter’s coming.
Even though it’s only late August, school’s just getting ready to start and winter doesn’t officially start for four months, forecasters are already getting a good picture of what to expect for winter 2014-15.
The logo of the United States National Weather Service. The source page states that is not an “official” version but it looks very close to the version used on NWS’s website. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The term “polar vortex” has crept back into the news as a mass of cooler air threatens to descend on the Great Lakes and farther south. But experts are dismissing that talk as so much, uh, hot air.
If the long-range forecasts hold true — and they often don’t — it’ll be a bit cooler than normal and you won’t have to run the air conditioner. That’s about it.
“I would shy away from using the term polar vortex,” said Tim Axford, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Pittsburgh. “Over the past six months that term has been used a lot and gotten a lot of media buzz for something that happens quite often.”
What may happen is a dip in the air currents that will send cooler air from Canada, giving us a few days of high and low temperatures about 10 degrees below normal, Mr. Axford said.
Welcome to Summer 2014 as The Old Farmer’s Almanac and its rival publication, the Farmers’ Almanac, forecast it.
Summer, which officially began at 6:51 a.m. today will be scorching hot and unbearably humid with thunderstorms soaking here and throughout the entire eastern section of the United States, the publications predict.
Wait. You don’t like that? Then perhaps you’d prefer the National Weather Service’s more temperate long-range prediction. Its forecast says the Pittsburgh region likely will have a typical summer for temperature and precipitation.
Locator map of the Scranton-Wilkes-Barre Metropolitan Statistical Area in the northeastern part of the of . (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
WILKES-BARRE, PA – As the saying goes, March is coming in like a lion.
Three to four inches of snow is expected in the Wyoming Valley Sunday into Monday, according to a spokesman for the National Weather Service. The storm comes on the heels of a week of bone-chilling temperatures.
March is the most volatile month of the year weatherwise as winter and spring duke it out.
It’s when winter transitions into spring and huge contrasts in air masses make for a nasty March cocktail. A battle zone of air masses results when lingering arctic fronts set up the dividing line between polar air colliding with spring-like milder temps. In this zone, you get massive outbreaks of severe storms and the tornado season launches, starting usually in late March and hits a peak by mid-late April.
But March in Philly has had some record snowstorms, including the infamous blizzard of 1888 when Philadelphia got smacked with 10.5 inches of snow along with winds approaching 80mph along the Jersey Shore.
And of course the very first “storm of the century” March 13-14, 1993, when we got buried with 12 inches of snow and sleet.
Feb. 26 to March 3 should be the most volatile time frame, with the best chance of more snow and temperatures at least 15-20 degrees below normal. Daytime highs in the mid 20s and overnight lows in the coldest of locations near zero. This would be for a 2-3 day time period.
Exactly how cold it will get and whether we will see another major snow storm is still questionable, but bares some watching. You know I will keep you updated.
In the meantime, you have a GREAT WEEKEND to look forward to as Saturday should see temperatures in the low 50s with sunshine.