GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — It’s safe to say Michigander’s rejoice when spring warmth returns. It teased us the first eight days of April. Within that span we enjoyed temperatures nearly six degrees above average and the year’s first 70 degree day on the April 7.
It’s been a downward spiral since then. The map below shows the overwhelming cold that has griped the U.S. the past two weeks.
Not only was it a cold stretch but wet as well. Eight days recorded measurable precipitation including seven with a trace or more of snow. Speaking of snow, there’s still a significant amount that can be found along the shore of Lake Superior. Bill Steffen recently tweeted that Marquette has had a snow depth of 30 inches for 68 consecutive days. They currently are down to a measly five.
It takes a while to melt snow in a colder pattern. Even though April got off to a warm start, month-to-date temperatures for Grand Rapids have dipped into the negative by a tune of four degrees. We aren’t the only ones who had to endure the onslaught of cold. Approximately 85% of the U.S. has been colder than average.
Sunday brought back the first above average temperatures across the area since April 12.
The question is will they stick around more consistently? Likely not for a while. Even though we have a shot at 70 again Saturday, it appears more often than not it will remain cool. This is reflected in the 8-14 day temperature outlook for May 5-11.
This is the time of year many cities in southwest Michigan are close to their average freeze date. If the much below average temps do occur, we may have to be concerned with some fruit trees and a few flowers.
Maybe we’ll have a April and May like 2018 where the fourth coldest April on record was followed by the fourth warmest May. That included the hottest Memorial Weekend on record as well with a string of 90s. Probably not though as the Climate Prediction Center’s latest guidance suggests otherwise. It appears the warmth will remain out west and in the deep south.
If nothing else in this cool pattern at least it will delay allergies a bit and the arrival of those pesky mosquitoes.