May might be for the record booksAfter March and April gave the area milder-than-normal conditions the month of May might just be one of the coldest on record, according to Daryl Ritchison, meteorologist for Forum Communications Co.
By: Keith Norman, The Jamestown Sun
After March and April gave the area milder-than-normal conditions the month of May might just be one of the coldest on record, according to Daryl Ritchison, meteorologist for Forum Communications Co.
“This pattern will stick around till about the middle of May,” Ritchison said. “While March and April were both in the top 10 statistically for warm months, May might be in the top 20 for the coldest.”
The warm weather of the past two months was all part of the global weather pattern.
“The Northern Hemisphere always has pockets that are hotter and colder than average,” Ritchison said. “We had about a six-week run where the northern United States had a nice flow from the jet stream and great weather. During that same time Asia and Europe had colder weather.”
But that pattern has been broken.
Ritchison said the wind on Tuesday and Wednesday was caused by two separate low-pressure systems moving through the region. While wind gusts of up to 45 mph were reported by the National Weather Service website Wednesday morning, no damage was reported by the Law Enforcement Center dispatch center in Jamestown.
As the second low-pressure system exited the area Wednesday a cold high-pressure system moved into the area. Forecasts from the National Weather Service indicate highs in the low 40s today and Friday. Normal highs for this time of year are near 65 degrees.
“The cloud cover with the high will keep temperatures steady with not much increase in the day and no real decreases at night,” he said. “But the low pressure system coming in Thursday night could bring snow to western North Dakota and even a little to the Jamestown area.”
Ritchison said the greater chance of snow in the western part of the state was due to the higher elevations there.
“It’s not mountains out there but the higher elevations in the west can see temperatures that are 1 or 2 degrees cooler than in the eastern part of the state,” he said. “The temperature differences that can turn a couple of inches into 8 inches of snow are subtle.”
Recent history would indicate this type of weather in May is not unusual.
“Remember it snowed in June in Dickinson last year,” Ritchison said. “Snow in May is more common than we want to admit. At least one year in three we’ll see snow.”
Sun reporter Keith Norman can be reached at (701) 952-8452 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org