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The coldest air of the season to take over the eastern United States


Nearly 60 million Americans in at least 15 states are on cold alert as the coldest air in seven months blankets the eastern United States.

On Thursday morning, low temperatures in the 1920s and 1930s will be widespread across the Ohio Valley and parts of the Northeast, while the 1940s will be felt as far south as northern Florida.

A series of storms sweep through the country, accompanied by winter weather and cold Canadian air. On Monday morning, residents of North Platte, Nebraska woke up to nearly 5 inches of snow on the ground, making it the the biggest first snow of the season in nearly two decades.

A second, cooler system is now in motion, bringing with it a sad combination of wet and cold weather in Oklahoma, Arkansas and Texas.

Dallas comfortably eclipsed 80 degrees on Monday, but Wednesday afternoon the city will struggle to warm beyond the mid-1950s, nearly 20 degrees below average and the coolest day since the 25th. February, when the maximum was only 53 degrees.

As the system migrates east, a drop in the jet stream will allow the cooler air of the season to settle in. From Arkansas to Connecticut, a cold combination of frost warnings and frost advisories dot the landscape, spanning more than 1,000 miles in more than a dozen states.

On Wednesday morning, millions of people in cities like Indianapolis, Pittsburgh and Cincinnati woke up to low temperatures in the 1920s and 1930s, the coldest since April and nearly 10 degrees below early November averages.

In a few places, temperatures will be cold enough to withstand a fleeting flurry or two, with snowflakes most likely in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula and the eastern Great Lakes, where lakefront showers are possible. . Although a little later than normal, Gaylord, Michigan received nearly a foot of snow on Tuesday. Snow showers will continue today in this region, but with lighter accumulations.

Some models also hint at a few snow showers in parts of northwestern Pennsylvania and northeastern Ohio, as well as the Catskill and Adirondack Mountains.

Thursday morning, the high pressure begins to form, setting the stage for clear skies and long November nights to bring the season’s coldest air to the northeast.

From above average to below average

It’s no surprise that the fall has been exceptionally mild across much of the eastern United States, with the northeast being the main beneficiary of the historic heat.

Philadelphia has just had its third hottest October on record, with an average temperature of 64 degrees for the entire month.

Atlantic City, New Jersey, recorded a monthly average of 64.1 degrees, making October 2021 the second warmest on record, while New York’s average of 62 degrees was more than 4 degrees above average of October.

Dozens of other locations in the mid-Atlantic region also experienced their hottest first three October months on record.

Just in time, as the calendar shifted from October to November, a noticeably cooler trend emerged, allowing temperatures to drop 5 to 15 degrees below seasonal averages.

Wednesday and Thursday highs in Philadelphia are expected to hover between 50 and 52 degrees, the last time an afternoon was this cold in Philadelphia was April 22, over a period of more than 6 months.

The same could be said for New York City where Thursday’s maximum forecast is around 50 degrees, the first time since late April residents of the Big Apple will experience such afternoon temperatures.

Frost advisories have been issued for much of the region as morning lows settle around 30 to 33 degrees.

Further south, the cold will be felt in cities like Charlotte, Birmingham and Atlanta, where high temperatures Wednesday and Thursday are only expected to stay into the 1950s.

In Atlanta, the average high this time of year is near 70 degrees, but on Thursday, the predicted high only warms the city to about 53 degrees. It would be the highest temperature in the city since April 1, over a period of more than 7 months.

Fortunately, as is often the case in early November, these first puffs of cold air are short lived. Forecast models suggest that a warmer, more seasonal trend returns to the east by the end of this weekend and early next week.

The Climate Prediction Center describes this potential well, showing that almost all of the eastern United States and the Midwest have a high likelihood of seeing warmer-than-average temperatures for the second week of November.

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