Warm weather to remain in forecast for several days

Posted March 13, 2012
Updated March 14, 2012

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— A high pressure system and warm air streaming up from the south will send temperatures across much of central North Carolina soaring into the 80s Wednesday, WRAL meteorologist Elizabeth Gardner said. 

The unseasonably warm temperatures won't be leaving right away, either, as temperatures should stay in the upper-70s and low-80s for much of the next week. 

"You've probably gotten used to this because of our warm winter," Gardner said. "But spring is coming in the next few days and it's going to stick with us. You'll be able to pull out T-shirts and shorts for much of the next week." 

It's a similar story nationally, as high temperatures broke records in several spots across the country Tuesday. National forecasters are predicting temperatures will likely remain unusually high through March.

A jet stream moving north to south on the West Coast is pushing an opposite, seesaw effect in the rest of the nation. Atmospheric patterns, including the Pacific phenomenon known as La Nina, have kept cold air bottled up over Canada and contributed to the warmer winter.

"It's been a nice trend," Gardner said. "Our normal high temperatures this time of year are in the 60s. We started out in the upper 50s and low 60s Wednesday morning."

By Wednesday afternoon, some spots in the area could come close to record temperatures. The record high for March 14 was recorded in 1973, when the temperature at Raleigh-Durham International Airport topped out at 86. 

Sunny skies remain in the forecast for Thursday, as highs should once again climb into the mid-80s, Gardner said. Scattered showers and isolated thunderstorms could make their way to the area Friday afternoon and Saturday. 

"The best chance we have for rain will come Friday afternoon," Gardner said. "It's a similar story on Saturday, but neither day is going to be rainy all day. These showers will be scattered."

Temperatures will cool back into the mid-to-upper 70s by early next week, but overnight lows will remain well above average, with most areas seeing temperatures stay in the upper 50s.


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  • Hans Mar 14, 2012

    This winter has gone exactly as YouMakeItSoEasy predicted. If you're out there, good job, bro! I wish you were wrong, but good job nonetheless.

  • jblake1932 Mar 14, 2012

    Stay tuned in folks, the forecast will change by tomorrow. Rain by the weekend

  • simplelogic Mar 14, 2012

    "let us look at the poles (N & S). our warm / hot weather is not effecting them."

    And obviously their cold weather is not affecting US. So what?

  • busyb97 Mar 14, 2012

    "Spring will be here in no time!!!"

    Did it ever stop?? We went from fall to spring, winter was barely a blip on the radar- what, maybe a week?

    I love it, and I've been in NC 15 yrs. But I'm really hoping it doesn't mean we have a nasty hot summer. Those, I do NOT like. Spoke with a delivery guy yesterday who said that "old timers" he spoke to said that when they've seen early warm springs, it resulted in really wet summers. I hope so. I'd rather that than drought and hot!

  • davidjunk2 Mar 14, 2012

    Complaining about the weather will not make it change. I'm just happy to be alive and enjoy every day, no matter what the weather. Please stop feeding the trolls that patrol this site regularly, just seeking attention.

  • dontstopnow Mar 14, 2012

    The warm winter was a blessing for those who are not employed or underemployed as well as Seniors struggling on fixed incomes. The electric usage has been tolerable with the mild winter.

  • PanthersFan45 Mar 14, 2012

    Just awesome weather of late and the clocks have now jumped ahead too. Maybe if Friday is projected to be dry I'll have to put in for a day off, hope this keeps up. We haven't had much of a winter but I'm not complaining.

  • babbleon Mar 14, 2012

    uhavenoclu: They get snow. We get ice. You can drive on snow, you can't drive on ice.

    Don't sneer until you really think it through.

  • Uhavenoclu Mar 13, 2012

    Oh yeh and other states don't shut down and all stores closed in the middle of a weekday not being a holiday when it gets 1-2 inches of snow...Try 22 in 24 hour span and the roads still being cleared?.

  • wral suks bauls Mar 13, 2012

    "thisguy80" Clearly you suffer from long term memory loss, or even short term memory loss... Because I remember very recently there being cold winters with snow, or at least 2-3 significant snow events, months of cold temperatures, followed by some warming in march. normally the above description begin around november.

    Though I dont mind the cold at all, I do appreciate 4 distinct seasons, which NC typically has... with a little more hot than cold days. However, warm temperatures and no snow have replaced what is typically known as 'winter' this year.