After nearly a week of highs in the upper 20s to mid-30s, temperatures will go “back to reality” this week with an incoming cold front, National Weather Service meteorologist Tim Lynch said Saturday.
Highs are expected to drop into the midteens for most of the week, which is around normal for January, Lynch said. However, Wednesday is expected to be slightly colder with highs around 9 degrees, the weather service forecast said.
“We’ll be back to reality and near normal on Thursday and Friday,” Lynch said.
Tuesday will also bring a slight chance of snow before 7 a.m. Winds are also expected to be blustery with gusts as high as nearly 40 mph. No snow is currently expected for the rest of the week, however, Lynch said.
Temperatures are expected to be at or above normal through mid-January but appears they will drop below normal by the end of the month, Lynch said. He added that temperatures could go “substantially” below normal by the end of January, but noted that the confidence level for the long-term forecast is fairly low.
Lynch said the warming period the region saw at the beginning of the month was, in part, driven by El Nino, which can cause a “warm bias” in the region during winter. El Nino can also cause temperatures in the winter to go even warmer than they may normally would during a typical winter.
Factors, such as Arctic oscillation, can also cause lower than normal temperatures, Lynch added. The combination can cause a large variance in temperatures.
“When (both factors are at play) we’ll get what’s call an amplified pattern where it’ll either be really warm or really cold with very little average in between,” he said, adding that the “average” temperature ends up being the median of the two extremes.