PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Where is spring?
That’s the question many people have been asking.
It has been an unseasonably cold and snowy start to spring, but will warmer weather ever arrive?
KDKA Chief Meteorologist Jeff Verszyla recently traveled to the National Weather Service Climate Prediction Center in Maryland.
The long-range forecasting experts there say we’re finally rounding the corner toward more seasonable weather.
“What’s unusual this year is that the residual signature that we typically see as we come out of a La Nina Winter has been more expansive and stronger,” says NWS Seasonal Forecaster Jon Gottschalk.
The result has been one of the 15 coldest Aprils on record for Pittsburgh.
We’ve seen 400 percent more snow than average for the month and this has also been the wettest start to any year, since record keeping started in the late 1800s.
So is winter gone for good?
The long-range forecasters say warmer days are ahead, but maybe not drier.
“In general we’re favoring above-normal temperatures for the Pittsburgh area, but above-average precipitation,” Gottschalk said.
The frequent precipitation we’ve had this winter and early spring has already caused landslides, flash flooding and river flooding.
But, as we get deeper into spring, as well as the summer storm season, precipitation will be more scattered.
The National Weather Service hydrologists believe that will level off our flooding chances.
“That’s generally due to the fact that the rain ran off quite quickly in February and so rivers are back down closer to normal levels, even though soil moisture is higher”, says NWS Hydrologist Kate Abshire.
The National Weather Service experts also say it’s highly likely we’ll see a quick warmup, going from winter-like weather to summer-like weather almost overnight.
Bottom line? Between now and the start of summer on June 21, we’re expected to have weather that is both hotter and wetter than we normally have this time of year.