Unseasonable warmth to sink 20 degrees by Tuesday

Posted January 13, 2013 10:38 a.m. EST
Updated January 14, 2013 11:33 a.m. EST

— A record-setting, three-day stretch of warm weather will end Tuesday, when temperatures will drop 20 degrees or more into the mid 40s, WRAL meteorologists said.

On Monday, a foggy morning gave way to a warm day, with a forecast high around 70 degrees. Some clouds and showers are possible in the afternoon and evening as a cold front approaches.

During the weekend, ice cream trucks rolled out in the neighborhoods, and adults and children crawled all over parks, as even the mountains saw temperatures in the 60s.

"I didn't have to put on no gloves and all that stuff," said Omar Wiggan, of Jamaica, who went to Pullen Park in Raleigh Sunday as the mercury hit 75 degrees. "The weather was all good, but I'm still looking for some snow, you know? I don't mind having the snow in this time."

"The kids were going bonkers at the park. A good day to be at the park, anything outside. Temperatures were way above normal," WRAL meteorologist Amiee Wilmoth said.

Saturday was even warmer. Raleigh-Durham International Airport recorded a 70-degree day in January the first time since 2008, and Fayetteville set a record Saturday with a high of 79, breaking the old record of 77 degrees set in 1916.

Seasonable chill will return Tuesday after the cold front brings an abrupt cooldown Monday night.

"Reality comes back on Tuesday," Wilmoth said.

The Triangle will have a high around 46 degrees and a decent shot of rain Tuesday. "During the day Tuesday, that front will kind of stall just to our south and east, so it may still be pretty warm to the southeastern coast and much cooler for a lot of us," WRAL meteorologist Mike Moss said.

The low 50s and partly cloudy skies will reign for the rest of the week. A chance for rain will linger into Wednesday, then the rest of the week will dry up.