Tuesday, February 18, 2014

The #BigMelt

There is finally some relief after a week of snow and ice followed by an earthquake.  It was quite cold this past week following the 12th coldest January on record for Columbia.  It was the 11th coldest for South Carolina as a whole in January.  The weather warmed after the first winter storm at the end of January.  Little did we know that it was a warm-up act for the next winter storm.

Most of the snow and ice melted as the sun returned on Friday and a warming trend began.  A cold shot of air on Saturday only slowed the melt, but the warming trend continued on Sunday.  This week will be noticeably warmer this week.  In fact, temperatures will be in the mid to upper 70s by Thursday.

The 7-day forecast for Columbia, SC, for February 18-24, 2014.  Click on the image for a larger view.  Image Credit: WLTX-TV.

Enjoy this brief interlude from the cold weather.  A cold front will pass through the Midlands on Friday with scattered thunderstorms.  There may be some severe weather with the frontal passage.  However, it will be turning cooler over the weekend into next week.

The cold weather is not over yet.  Much of next week is expected to be colder than normal.  The outlook from the Climate Prediction Center (CPC) is for a high probability of colder than normal conditions.  This will wrap up the end of February into the beginning of March.

The 8-14 day outlook for the period February 25 -  March 3, 2014.  The panel on the left is the probabilistic forecast for Columbia, SC.  This gives the probabilities of seeing above, below, or near normal temperatures or precipitation.  It also gives you the normal values for the week.  Click on the image for a larger view.  Image Credit: NOAA\CPC.

One positive note is that it is unlikely that we will see snow and ice again this winter.  However, we may be trading that in for severe local storms.  It is unlikely to see two slow years in a row.