Winter, weather-wise, is over. Yes, I said: OVER.
Now, hear me out before you scoff. Meteorological Winter consists of December, January, & February. So, in the weather books, Winter has two weeks left. Meteorological Spring begins on March 1st. And, by looking at the computer weather guidance models, we won't see any sustained cold through the end of this month.
After Thursday's cold, warm air quickly moves in for the weekend and beyond. Temperatures will stay above normal until further notice. 50's and even a few 60-degree readings are in the forecast through next week.
The Winter Season certainly started out in a promising way. December was cold. The second and third week of the month saw temperatures plummet. and we had a good shot of snow as well. December finished with below normal temperatures. Snow birds were rejoicing!
But, then, things went north... literally. The cold air I mean. It retreated north and has had trouble sliding south for more than a couple of days at a time since just before Christmas. January and February have resembled the warm weather we had LAST winter during that strong El Nino. In fact, like an El Nino Winter, the nastiest weather so far in January and February has been out along the West Coast, in California, Washington and Oregon. They've seen record-setting winter rains and mountain snows... virtually obliterating their five-yea drought.
Meanwhile, here in Northern Ohio, January temperatures were a full 6 degrees above the 30-year average. While snowfall was about 2/3's of normal. February looks to finish well above normal too on the thermometer. Current temperatures are running 5.6 degrees above the 30 year average with warm weather coming this weekend. For the month of February, we've had about 3 inches of snow, and that's well below normal.
Now, before you head to Twitter or Facebook and tell everyone I said 70-degree temps were headed our way, remember this: We will still likely see more snow and cold before the end of March. The weather is full of ups and downs. What I'm saying is that we'll see many more "up" days than down!
When I say Winter is over, I mean that sustained cold weather is not in the cards. Cold that lasts more than 2 or 3 days is not likely for the rest of February! And once we get to March, with longer days and more sunlight, cold air has an even tougher time sticking and staying here in Northern Ohio.