As I look out to my right from my newsroom chair I'm thinking two things.
1) I can't wait to get outside!
2) It looks hazy and hot
On this last day of winter we're ending the season on a very appropriate note: Abnormal. It has been a weird winter to say the least, especially when it is compared to one year ago. We have gone from the third-snowiest winter season on record in 2010-2011 to now the third least-snowy season (so far) in Burlington. Last winter was slightly cooler than average while this year has just been above and beyond seasonal levels.
Here's how I broke it down. I went through data from December 22, 2011 to today March 19, 2012. I looked at observed highs, lows, precipitation, and snow then compared those numbers to the "average" (from 1981-2010) to look at the climate data. Here's what I've got.
Date Lows Avg Dep Highs Avg Dep Precip Avg Dep Snow Avg Dep
Dec 22-31 17.7° 13.1° (+4.6°) 34.3° 29.5° (+4.8°) 0.95" 0.72" (+.23") 2.6" 6.5" (-3.9")
January 15.7° 12.2° (+5.5°) 33.3° 27.2° (+6.1°) 1.96" 2.06" (-.1") 13.4" 21.1" (-7.7")
February 19.7° 12.5° (+7.2°) 37° 30.6° (+6.4°) 0.89" 1.76" (-.87") 6.4" 16.4" (-10")
March 1-19 31.2° 20.5° (+11.7°) 50.8° 37.5° (+13.3°) 0.79" 1.31" (-.60") 5.9" 11.2" (-5.3")
*Note* I entered some forecast numbers into the March data to conclude for the last day of winter. I put in the low so far of 50° in Burlington (which I think we'll stay above through midnight) and 72° into the high which is the forecast high. If that ends up being higher than the high and departure from high will be slightly more.
But for now, the totals look pretty impressive.
Low temperatures averaged 7.3° warm
High temperatures averaged 7.7° warm
Precipitation was 1.26" dry
Snowfall was 26.9" behind
All of the data above is for the Burlington International Airport. The Meteorological Winter is already over, which was all of December, January, and February. I thought it'd be neat to look at the actual winter in terms of the calendar year. This is no surprise looking at the data and remembering back to how it was this year. In fact, it has seemed to get warmer and warmer as each month passed. Look at the numbers above and go down (further in time). The departure from average gets higher (for temperatures) and precip/snow falls further behind (generally speaking) with time. Now onto the spring and summer season. So far the Climate Prediction Center has our area in an above-average temperature category for the next three months (through June) and equal chances for above or below average precipitation.
-Meteorologist Steve Glazier