Published: 2013-12-17 07:12:00
Updated: 2013-12-17 18:19:23
Posted December 17, 2013
Raleigh, N.C. — Saturday will be the first official day of winter, but don’t tell the thermometer that.
North Carolina residents will be able to mark the winter solstice with a wardrobe of sandals and short sleeves as the mercury rises to unseasonably warm temperatures by the end of the week. Saturday high will hit 75 degrees.
“Seventy-five degrees on Sunday with variable cloudy skies – amazing,” WRAL meteorologist Elizabeth Gardner said. “Our normal high temperature is 52, so we’re going to be more than 20 degrees above normal. We may end up tying the record high, which was set back in 1967.”
The warm-up is welcome after a few weeks of consistently chilly temperatures and a bout of rain. Gardner said a rush of warm air from the west is responsible for the change.
But don’t put away the coats just yet.
Wednesday will mark the coldest day of the week before temperatures begin to rise.
A cold front dipping down from the north will keep the mercury in the 40s Wednesday, Gardner said. “We’re going to have a hard time making it to 50 tomorrow,” she said. “We looking at 40s really for most of the day.”
By mid-day, Tuesday temperatures had reached 60 degrees in central North Carolina, and overnight lows will hover just below freezing.
The forecast is dry until Saturday, when there is a 70 percent chance of light rain across the region.