Why Is It So Cold?

Bill's Blog

The last 6 days (May 6-11) have been 11.5° colder than average. Today (Wed.) will be the 9th day in a row that’s colder than average. Muskegon tied a record low temperature (30°) for May 11. First, let’s look at the upper level wind flow, which is generally parallel to the lines on this map:

Upper Level Wind Flow

The air that is coming into Michigan is coming due south off Hudson Bay, Canada. Hudson Bay is frozen over now:

In fact, most of the inland lakes north of Lake Superior are still frozen over. With a north-northwest wind at the surface and aloft, you’re bringing some chilly air (relative to the 2nd week of May) down into Michigan.

Snow on I-25 south of Denver, Colorado on Tuesday May 11

We may have the cool air, but we don’t have this! This DOT pic. is I-25 south of Denver, Colorado around Larkspur. They reported “near blizzard” conditions and slippery driving. Here’s some snowfall totals…including 16″ at Bear Lake and 14″ at Mt. Audubon. At mid-afternoon, Berthoud Pass reported a temperature of 18°, a wind chill of +4° and heavy snow. Snowfall totaled around 2″ at Colorado Springs and Fort Collins. The high temp. of 43° at Denver was 26° colder than average. Season snowfall is up to 72″ at Denver (Stapleton), 103.1″ at Boulder and 227″ at Winter Park.

We’ll have 4 mostly sunny days in a row from Wednesday to Saturday with slowly warming temperatures. I think most all of us (not you, Leota and Baldwin) and done with the Freeze warnings and Frost Advisories after Thursday AM. The long-range outlook continues to forecast warmer than average temperatures for the 2nd half of May (some summer-like days ahead).

8-14 Day Temperature Outlook for May 19-25

The latest 8-14 Day Outlook calls for warmer than average temperatures from coast-to-coast.

Also, some good news from the National Interagency Fire Center: “To date, 20,098 wildfires have burned 542,499 acres. The number of acres burned is well below the 10-year average of 983,396 acres burned.”

After a dry winter, the water levels of California reservoirs are mostly low.

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