Saturday, March 8, 2014
Some cool air from the far north is headed to the region tonight and will linger into Tuesday morning. Early August has seen temperatures in the lower 40s and we won’t be that cool. However, with lows in the upper 40s the next couple of mornings and very dry air it is going to feel September-like. The humidity will be very low and if you have plants in containers you will likely notice they dry out quite quickly the next could of days. It would not surprise me if a few isolated spots in the Allagash region of the state see a low around 39F either tomorrow or Tuesday morning. If you are camping the next couple of days you will definitely enjoy sitting around the fire in the evening.
The reason for the chill lies in the configuration of the upper level winds. When I write upper level, I am taking about winds from about 10,000 to 30,000 feet high in the atmosphere. The flow at this level will come straight from the far northern reaches of the planet where even this time of the year it can snow. The temperature this morning in Resolute, which is in the Nunavut section of Canada was in the lower 30s.
What happens to that air as it travels southward is that it modified and by the time it reaches our area it’s much warmer. This process works all year long and is why the air here is never as cold as the source region is comes from.
Although it won’t be very warm, it is going to be very sunny. The next few days will be spectacular not only to look at, but to be outside. With dew points in the 40s the air will feel delightful and it won’t be too warm to even go for a midday run.
A weather system will move through the region later Wednesday and part of Thursday. This brings more clouds, an increase in humidity and the chance for some rain. The end of the week should see a return to drier and seasonable temperatures.
Tropical activity is very quiet right now and this doesn’t look to change this week. During an average year the peak of tropical activity is from the end of August through September. Ocean water is running warm and if there was a tropical system in our area, it could remain quite strong. That said, there are so many variables that come into play with these types of systems the best advice is to just have a plan on the back burner in case something does occur.
David Epstein has been a meteorologist for more than 25 years. He spent 16 years in Boston and currently freelances at WGME13 in Portland.
In 2006, David founded GrowingWisdom.com, a business producing educational and marketing videos for the green industry. He currently is a professor at Framingham State College, teaches Jan Plan at Colby College and owns Bloomscapes Inc., a landscape design business.
David authored "Gardens Of New England" and his work has been published in Grolier's Science Annual for 10 years. He lives in South Natick, Mass., and has a summer home in Harpswell.