WEST MICHIGAN- I know it's still technically winter for another 8 days, but as the calendar turns to March and we set our clocks forward, our natural progression of thinking is that it's going to be warmer soon.
Obviously that wasn't the case this morning, as we had snow in most of our area. But the trends as we get closer toward the first official day of spring (March 20th,) tell us that it's going to be warmer than normal here very shortly. The Climate Prediction Center has us in about a 50 percent chance of warmer than normal temperatures for the next week or so. I would expect that puts us in about 45-50 degrees for St. Patrick's Day weekend, with slightly warmer temperatures early next week as well.
I think the biggest concern many people have is not that it's cold and snowy during the winter time, but how long into spring it may last. It seems as it's going to get colder again toward the end of the month as well. As we are above average for the next 7 days, we'll head right back below average to finish the month.
A look at some of the long range ensemble models tell us that while we're not going to be incredibly cold to finish the month, we're going to run between 3-5 degrees above normal on average. Normal temperatures to close out the month are in the upper 40s, so you can expect a few more days in the 30s to hold on just yet. I can't tell you if you need to put away the snowblower just yet, but the temperature trend looks up and down over the next 2-3 weeks at the very least.