Cold snap ahead for several states

Jet stream dips far south; freeze warnings issued

After getting teased with air that could’ve been imported straight from summer, Mother Nature is reminding us who’s in charge.

Most of the country from Texas and the southern Plains to the Midwest, the Southeast, and up and down the East Coast all experienced high temperatures 10 to 20 degrees warmer than what’s normal for the middle of April. It was a welcome change from the long, drawn-out bitter cold winter most of the country’s been experiencing.

That’s all about to change when a cold front spanning from northern Michigan to south-central Texas moves east across the country. Weather along this front is going to vary wildly.

The Gulf Coast is experiencing severe weather today while the mid-south is looking at rain and possible thunderstorms, and the Midwest will see rain changing over to snow tonight.

Air behind this front is much colder. Tonight’s low temperatures are expected to drop to near freezing or well below that in areas as far south as Central Texas.

 

This has prompted the National Weather Service to issue freeze warnings, hard freeze warnings, and freeze watches from Texas to southern Ohio.

 

Watches and warnings like these are only issued during the growing season. The last frost for a lot of these areas is expected to occur at the end of March, but that doesn’t mean a late frost like this can’t occasionally squeeze in there.

 

This exceptionally cold air behind the front is, in part, thanks to the jet stream dipping uncharacteristically far south. This time of year, the jet stream travels north and south as we transition from winter to summer, but this is a particularly big swing.

The good news is this won’t last long. The jet stream and its cold air begin to retreat northward by the end of the week. By the weekend, everyone should be seeing temperatures closer to normal.

Follow Storm Shield Meteorologist Jason Meyers via the Storm Shield app on twitter, @StormShieldApp and Facebook. Download the Storm Shield Weather Radio App for your iPhone or Android device and get severe weather alerts wherever you are.

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