Warm Air Invading the Central and Eastern US to Close Out the Week

Posted: December 9, 2021 12:47 pm

A significant warming of temperatures is in the forecast in the coming days for the central and eastern US, prompting many Americans to check their calendars to see what month it really is. In addition to the unseasonably warm temperatures, the incoming weather pattern will also be relatively lacking in moisture.

Warm Temperatures to Hang On

The current long-range forecast is demonstrating that this warmth may hang on in the weeks leading up to the holidays. This could be bad news for those hoping for a White Christmas. Some of the warmest areas may record daily high temperatures that are 20 degrees warmer than average. As a result, forecasters are predicting that many daily record highs will be challenged. The good news is that heating costs will likely be lower for a large swath of the nation, providing a welcome financial break during this expensive time of the year.

Why the Warmth?

As forecasters had predicted months ago, the pervading pattern in December will be a jet stream that dips to the south out in the West with the jet stream bulging north in the eastern part of the US. This position will make it easier for storms to drop to the south along the West Coast before tracking across the Rocky Mountains and dumping snow. The track would then take it to the northeast, delivering stormy conditions to the northern Plains and the Great Lakes.

In advance of this track, a mass of warm air will set up across a great majority of the country. A wide swath of the US stretching from the Plains into the Ohio Valley, the mid-Atlantic, and the southern half of New England is likely to not see the snowfall that is typical of this time of the year because of the warmth.

A storm system predicted to form over the Four Corners area on Thursday will be responsible for the warm air that circulates to the north and into the Plains and Mississippi Valley before heading toward the Appalachians and finally to the East Coast later in the week.

Temperature Records May Fall

As a result of the circulation of air from the storm, daily highs may soar into the 70s for cities such as Kansas City, Dallas, Indianapolis, and Nashville. Some cities may see records challenged as the warmth settles into place.

By the time the weekend arrives, the warmth will expand into the Great Lakes and beyond. While the record high for Saturday’s date is 61 degrees set back in 1899, the mercury is forecast to challenge this reading.

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It is shaping up to be a beautiful weekend for the mid-Atlantic and southern New England. A daytime high of 64 degrees is in the forecast for New York City. Other cities that may see records fall include Baltimore and Philadelphia.

Forecasters are predicting a slight cooling on Sunday as the backside of the storm’s cold front comes through. However, another surge of warmth is expected to build over the Plains and then move to the east at the beginning of the week, bringing another round of moderate temperatures.

While the central and eastern parts of the US are not seeing weather patterns likely to deliver a widespread White Christmas, the forecast may be more promising for the West. Storms forming in the Pacific Ocean in the middle of the month may pack the moisture punch needed to bring rain to the lower elevations of the West Coast with snow to the mountains of this region.

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