Weather the Next Three Months

Spring is here according to the calendar, yet the temperatures don’t show it.

By Duaine Marxen

Published April 5, 2013

The Herald

Brief warm-ups during the day and rather cool nights are not lending to retreat the frost in the ground to the point field work can seriously commence.Will this continue? Daryl Ritchison, meteorologist at WDAY-TV Fargo gives his outlook on the next three months.

There is an old saying that droughts do not start or end in the winter. There is some truth to that, especially in this region. The main reason is winter precipitation averages only around two inches (liquid equivalency) in North Dakota, which is nothing more than a good summer thunderstorm. Granted many parts of the state recorded above average precipitation during the past three months and so some noticeable river flooding will likely be occurring in April. Yet there are several examples of spring flooding during dry stretches, where the ongoing drought continued. Spring and early summer rains will still be the principal factors in determining if the drought from 2012 will continue for another growing season.

March is likely to finish below average for temperatures and above average for precipitation in much of the state with the possible exception of the southwestern part of North Dakota. April also looks to be cooler than average as the March weather pattern lingers through at least the first half of that month. Precipitation in April is expected to be generally above average.

Other years in the past that have had similar weather patterns to what has occurred so far in 2013 have tended to turn a bit drier and warmer in May. But even a change in the pattern in that time frame would probably leave the spring season slightly below average for temperatures and above average for precipitation when averaged for the entire three month period.

The latest spring outlook from the Climate Prediction Center (CPC) for the next three months is out.

The CPC is forecasting equal chances of above, below or normal temperatures and precipitation but have cool and wet areas near by which would match my thoughts. You can find their current and future outlooks at

www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/predictions/90day

Dates to Remember:

April 16 4-H Shooting Sports Organizational Mtg. – Legion Room, Mott

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