Isobar looks at February weather 2013.03.06

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

Fourteen days with temperatures in the teens and below. Five of them in single digits. Eleven days when the temperature stayed below freezing. It was a wintery month last in February.

"It's become unusual to have below-average temperature months," said Morenci area climate observer George Isobar, "but we had one last month. The departure from normal was 1.5° below average."

There was a string of five warmer-than-average days from Feb. 10 to 14, he said, but only one days was significantly above average. However, that was preceded by five days with morning temperatures in the single digits, including the low of 3° recorded February 3. The high temperature for February was recorded February 18 at 50°.

February also turned out to be the snowiest month of the season with 11.7 inches.

"Our biggest snowfall was only 2.9 inches," Isobar said. "It just built up slowly over the month. We had a least a trace falling on 17 days."

Freezing rain fell on two days, and the frozen stuff wasn't all snowflakes, Isobar said. During the month there were some ice pellets and snow grains, and in the final storm of the month, a lot of rain that led to a slushy mess when snow followed.

"We were right on the edge of that storm," Isobar said. "Not too far to the south there wasn't any snow. North toward Clayton, more than twice as much snow fell than in Morenci."

There were plenty of windy days last month. The average wind speed in Toledo was 9.7 miles an hour. There five days with the strongest wind gust measured at 30 miles an hour and above. The peak gust came in at 49 miles an hour and another at 45. Trees and limbs went down in several areas of Lenawee County, but none were reported in Morenci.

MARCH—March started off on the chilly side, then moved into the snowy side, but that should moderate soon. Temperatures are expected to rise into the 40s at least through next Tuesday, and they should remain above freezing starting on Saturday.

“I like to point out that we’ve had some really big snowstorms in March,” Isobar said, “but that’s not the norm.”

The average snow total for March stands at about five and a half inches.

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