Despite the warm ending, the month just ending is the coldest April since 1996. Seventeen years ago, the mean temperature was 5.8 degrees below average. This month, we will be more like 5 degrees below. It was a wet month, too. Through yesterday, 4.75 inches of rain and melted snow was received at the National Weather Service (NWS) near Negaunee. The average for the entire month is less than 3 inches. Speaking of snow, there was plenty of it, especially over the far western U.P. Even in the central, the NWS measured 27.6 inches for the month; the average is a bit over a foot. Some locations in Gogebic and Ontonagon Counties as well as the Copper Country are probably looking at record snows for the month of April.
We had the quick turn to spring, so will that trend continue into May? I??m afraid the answer is ??no.?? A cold front will pass through the U.P. tonight into Wednesday. The cooling trend will begin on May Day and continue into Thursday. In fact, it looks like it could get cold enough for some wet snow in a familiar place??far western Upper Michigan??late Wednesday night into Thursday night. Farther east, it looks like it will be somewhat milder and also drier. Farther out, the longer range models are hinting at a ridge-trough pattern over North America (Image 1 above). If this verifies, it would mean a northwesterly flow aloft and cooler than average temperatures as we work through the first third-to-one-half of May 2013.