It is not unusual for a winter season to suddenly change or even reverse character, as various elements affect the position of the jet stream and storm track. The winters of 2017-18 and 2018-19 were very back-heavy, with most of the snow and cold weather coming after mid-January. Last winter started out very rough, but then very little snow fell after mid-January. Although late-winter temperatures were fairly cold in 2020 and the spring was cold, the overall pattern was largely quiet and benign.
Other than two weeks of bitterly cold air of high-Arctic origin that settled in for two weeks in early February, this is turning out to be a very mild winter. Even with those two weeks included, the daily mean temperature averaged since Nov. 1 is among the warmest 15 on record in both Fargo and Grand Forks. During those two weeks, however, it was hard to remember what a mild winter this is.