Triangle basks in summer-like temps in last week of winter

Posted March 14, 2012

— A high-pressure system and warm air streaming up from the south pushed temperatures across much of central North Carolina into the 80s Wednesday, sending many residents outside for an early taste of summer.

Amy Hambright stopped by The Meat House in north Raleigh to pick up something to throw on the grill for dinner.

"Tonight, it’s chicken – garlic chicken – so we’re looking forward to it. Last night was hamburgers," Hambright said.

The high temperature of 84 degrees at the Raleigh-Durham International Airport was 22 degrees above normal mid-March temperatures for the region, and WRAL meteorologist Mike Maze said the summer-like weather should last for several days.

A ridge of high pressure is keeping the jet stream far north of North Carolina, blocking any cooler air from moving into the state, Maze said.

"The ridge will only build and strengthen, so next week could actually be hotter than what we're experiencing right now," he said.

Daily highs should stay in the mid- to upper 70s or low 80s for much of the next week.

"It’s time to take the grill cover off and get out there and cook some steaks," said Paul Kellum, general manager of The Meat House, noting that Hambright isn't the only person looking to cook outside.

"Most people don’t like to stand around in the cold and play with their food in the backyard," Kellum said. "They love the fact that they can (now) get out and relax and have a glass of wine or a beer and enjoy themselves while they cook."

People eating outdoors Outdoors beckon as days get longer, warmer

Cisco Ortiz of Performance Bicycle said people also are looking to get more outdoors exercise as the days grow longer and warmer.

"A lot of people are excited about the weather getting warm, so they are coming in and getting their bikes tuned up," Ortiz said.

Barry Thompson said he was taking advantage of the sunny day to do some outdoor cleaning and spend time with his dog.

"You can do more outside things like washing your own car and having more fun with your animals," Thompson said.

Even with the high unusually high temperatures, low humidity levels make it comfortable outside, WRAL meteorologist Elizabeth Gardner said.

"As long as the dew-point stays fairly low, it won't feel so muggy," Gardner said.

Scattered showers and isolated thunderstorms could make their way to the area Friday afternoon and Saturday.

Weekend highs will be in the 70s, and overnight lows will remain in the 50s through the next week.

"I’m much happier (because of the weather)," Hambright said. "I have more energy. I'm ready to get outside and go do stuff."


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  • Uhavenoclu Mar 15, 2012

    Hey I saw my shadow we still have 6 months left of winter.

  • vraptor Mar 15, 2012


    what is the weather at santa's summer home?

    Temperature -72 F (-58 C)
    Windchill -110 F (-79 C)

    what is the diff? 80 - -72 = 152 degrees F.

    how can that be if we have gubber worming? i don't care what some lame people say. just the fact mame.

  • Ambygirl Mar 15, 2012

    corgimom06-- I'm impressed!! That's cool information! Way to go!

  • corgimom06 Mar 15, 2012

    "an article came out in the Wall Street Journal, signed by 16 prominent climate scientists, challenging the "science" behind the claim. '

    Well, I can believe hundreds of scientist around the world or the 16 that signed an op-ed in WSJ, which is hardly neutral. You might try reading this article in Forbes about the WSJ piece basically saying its not scientifically accurate. Very interesting.

    This was signed by 255 members of the United States National Academy of Sciences:

    Not to mention that the credibility of some of the 16 signers of the WSJ Op-Ed have been questioned:

  • redrubberball1 Mar 15, 2012

    "Some reading for those of you who don't believe climate change is real or man-made:"

    Around the 27th of Jan., an article came out in the Wall Street Journal, signed by 16 prominent climate scientists, challenging the "science" behind the claim. The gist of it is that it is not settled science and those who believe so have been duped. It would behoove you proponents to read it and the followup to it that appeared in the WSJ in Feb.

  • Ambygirl Mar 15, 2012

    simplelogic my sentiments exactly.

  • corgimom06 Mar 15, 2012

    Some reading for those of you who don't believe climate change is real or man-made:

  • redrubberball1 Mar 15, 2012

    "would mayberry be under water if that happened. nope. mayberry's elevation is 350 ft."

    I haven't noted any significant change in ocean level along the NC coast in the past 50 years? Have you?

  • redrubberball1 Mar 15, 2012

    ""Basks"? How about "is annoyed to have to be running the AC in the 2cnd week of March"? Wow, it ought to be 145 degrees by August at this rate. Ridiculous!"

    Try insulating your home. Mine is well insulated and my a/c probably won't even come on today.

  • simplelogic Mar 15, 2012

    vraptor, I bet you bore the heck out of your friends and family.