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Where did El Nino Go?

By Jack Hughes 3 min read
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Jack Hughes

Last week we wrote about a pause from the mild wet weather we had been experiencing through late December and into the first two weeks of January.

The pause arrived via a visit from the Polar Vortex which brought cold polar air across the northern border and plunged all the way to the Gulf Coast. Snow fell across the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states bringing many cities their first decent snow in over 700 days.

Even much of the south got in on the action with cold and snow in Tennessee and North Carolina and, worst of all, that dreaded ice that oftentimes plagues our southern states while we get snow across Southwestern Pennsylvania.

Folks who winter vacation in Florida are often disappointed when visits from the Polar Vortex follow them southward. Tuesday morning saw morning temperatures of 22 in Pensacola, 27 in Jacksonville and 23 in Tallahassee. The capital city of Florida has the all-time record low for Florida of 2 degrees below zero set back in 1899. In 2022 snow fell across much of the Florida Panhandle on January 3rd.

Sometimes vacationers forget to pack any heavier clothes and are surprised as were the folks in Northern Florida this past week.

Even Disney got down to the low 40s on Tuesday. Diane and I spent a few days in South Florida and when I got up this morning on Marco Island it was 59 which was 53 degrees warmer than Uniontown; a great morning to attend the Farmers Market for some fresh tomatoes, strawberries and corn.

By the time I got the bike out it was 65 and sunny which is perfect for biking. Fortunately most of the polar air moderates by the time it gets to south Florida and if you really want to get away from the cold the Florida Keys are your best bet.

These intrusions of cold air are usually short lived and within a few days, temperatures across much of Florida rebound into 60s across the north and 70s and low 80s in the south.

In looking at the weather patterns over the coming days it now appears that El Nino will revisit pushing the cold Arctic air back north and allowing a return of some milder air which should make for temperatures rising through the 30s and into the 40s and perhaps the 50s, melting away the snows of last week. Precipitation should be rain for the most part. Sunset this week will be 5:25 and sunrise 7:35.

This should help to boost spirits, and don’t forget winter is more than half over.

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