To the Editor:
Not to upstage Western Maryland Murray and Punxsutawney Phil, but it appears we’ve already been put on notice that it’s going to be quite a while before we see anything that looks like spring.
The groundhogs will wait until Feb. 2 to make their annual winter/spring prediction. In the meantime, AccuWeather is reporting that the cold and snow will continue in Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia and points north through the end of March — and possibly even longer.
“For the next six weeks in the Northeast, we’re going to be dealing with some pretty good cold coming down out of northern Canada,” Paul Pastelok, AccuWeather’s lead long-range forecaster said Wednesday. “I still think there’s going to be a few systems of significance before the winter season is over,” he said.
A map accompanying the forecast shows our region in an area labeled “Cold, snow continue.” Nearly all of the South is labeled “Slow transition to spring.”
The best chances for an early spring will be found in the Southwest. Below-normal snowpack and dry conditions have given that region a mild winter so far. In Florida, a quick warmup is expected and spring will be early there, as well.
In the meantime, there is a little short-term relief for those of us tired of dealing with the Polar Vortex and its sub-zero readings. AccuWeather is predicting a high of about 40 degrees on Friday and Saturday, then a balmier high temperature of 47 for Sunday.