On March 30, 1986, the high temperature at Ironwood reached a balmy 72 degrees. This was not a stand-alone record; it was just as warm 76 years earlier in 1910. Back then, the trees were most likely budding on the Gogebic Range. That??s because an extended warm spell set in at least 10 days earlier. On the 21st, a record high of 65 was set. Then the high at Ironwood reached or exceeded 70 on March 23, 24, 25 and 29. In Marquette, March 1910 came in with a mean temperature of 38.4 degrees, 14.5 degrees above the long-term average. March 1910 was very similar to the incredible March two years ago when the mean at the National Weather Service (NWS) near Marquette was 39.7 degrees (Images 1 & 2 above).
While March 1910 was warm, it was back-loaded with record highs late in the month. March 2012, on the other hand, hit a peak in the middle of the month. Starting on St. Patty??s Day there were five consecutive days with highs in the mid 70s to low 80s. That incredible stretch of weather saw the mean at 40 degrees above average.
This March is ending warm??2014 style. A storm bringing blizzard conditions to parts of the Dakotas will pass to our west during the night. On Tuesday, it will pass over northern Lake Superior and then move quickly eastward. Colder air will filter into the U.P. during the day Tuesday with only a little light snow and flurries.The time period to watch for is later in the week. A system now off the West Coast will drift inland, move eastward and then a new storm will emerge onto the Plains and eventually head northeastward toward the Great Lakes. This low will likely move farther south and east than the present one and give us the chance at a significant snowstorm. Right now, Friday into early Saturday looks like the timeframe that the storm will move through the area.