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Weather Talk: February cold is likely to linger

So far, the cold and the mild have about equaled each other out this winter season here in the Red River Valley. February could change that.

A mid-February pattern switch to a much milder pattern, which had been forecast by many of the weather models during January, appears to be falling short of expectations. Next week is likely to be a bit less frigid, but a long-term thawing period is looking less and less likely.

An area of deep low pressure in the Hudson Bay region is showing no sign of moving or weakening. This low will keep steering cold weather our direction.

If February remains mostly colder than average, it will be enough to bring down the mean temperature of the winter season from near-average to below average. This is the typical result of a winter when La Nina is cooling the waters of the eastern tropical Pacific Ocean, as it has been this winter.

John Wheeler

John was born in Baton Rouge, LA, and grew up near Birmingham, Alabama. As a teenager, his family moved to Madison, Wisconsin, and later to a small town in northeast Iowa. John traces his early interest in weather to the difference in climate between Alabama and Wisconsin. He is a graduate of Iowa State University with a degree in meteorology. Like any meteorologist, John is intrigued by extremes of weather, especially arctic air outbreaks and winter storms.  John has been known to say he prefers his summers to be hot but in winter, he prefers the cold.  When away from work, John enjoys long-distance running and reading.  John has been a meteorologist at WDAY since May of 1985.

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