Severely cold weather to pause as warming looms after polar vortex

In the blink of an eye, the cold air that has existed for millions of people, especially in the Northeast and the Midwest, is rapidly leaving. It leaves behind temperatures that are anything but the heart of winter.

The FOX Forecast Center said the high pressure building ridge is expected to bring temperatures 10 to 30 degrees above average for many communities east of the Rocky Mountains for several days.

The polar vortex helped temperatures reach record lows to kick off the weekend with wind chills of -108°F in Mount Washington, New Hampshire and -45°F in Portland, Maine.

Forecast models show Portland could reach 40 degrees as early as Monday, and major cities along the I-95 corridor could see heat before then.

The FOX Forecast Center said this trend will translate into high temperatures in the 60s and 70s across much of the country’s southern tier, with even sporadic readings of 80 degrees possible.

“East of the Mississippi River is likely to be warmer and west of the Rocky Mountains is likely to be cooler because it is the rainy season. Then this trade continues in the second half of the month. So February will be warm,” said FOX Weather meteorologist Steve Bender.

Temperature forecast for February.
The high temperatures of the 60s and 70s will spread to most of the southern tier of the country.
FOX weather

Temperature care.
Forecast models show that Portland could hit 40 as early as Monday.
FOX weather

Warm temperatures also mean no significant snow is expected east of the Mississippi River for another week. In places like the Ohio Valley and the I-95 corridor, snowfall deficits will continue as the end of the meteorological winter approaches.

Warmer air will also help limit below-average ice expansion over the Great Lakes. An analysis by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration found that the combined ice cover of the five lakes is only about 15 percent, a figure closer to record lows than record highs.

Historical data showed that around February 3, 34% of the surface of Lakes Superior, Michigan, Huron, Erie 22, and Ontario were covered in ice.

In the south, it is not the ice cover that is monitored, but the formation of leaves and pollen.

Experts from the US National Phenological Network reported that the spring growth process has reached two to three weeks ahead of the norm in some communities in Texas and as far north as North Carolina.

Arctic sea smoke rises over the Atlantic Ocean at the port of Portland Head Light on Saturday.
Arctic sea smoke rises over the Atlantic Ocean at the port of Portland Head Light on Saturday.

Early flowering can lead to a long pollen season, which medical experts warn is a growing trend, especially in the southeast.

The NOAA Climate Prediction Center expects the warmer-than-average temperature trend in the eastern United States to continue through mid-February.

As at the beginning of the year, the chance of a storm in the west is expected to remain above average, leading to an increased chance of rain and cooler temperatures.

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