We Asked A Meteorologist About What's In Store For Spring 2021
The spring season is notorious for its ups and downs in temperatures, rainfall, and allergens, so we asked a meteorologist for any intel on what we can expect here in the U.S. in the coming months. Here's her forecast—prep your natural allergy relief accordingly.
What a meteorologist is predicting for the U.S. this spring.
For the past several months, the U.S. has been in a La Niña pattern, explains meteorologist Heather Waldman, which means the water at the surface of the Eastern Pacific is a bit cooler than normal. "For the most part, we saw that pattern pan out through the winter, and it certainly did make things more active in the northeastern U.S.," she explains, noting that a lot of the major cities along the East Coast saw significant snowfall this year.
With the La Niña pattern still going strong, Waldman says that same frequent storminess will likely be maintained; except now, it'll be rain instead of snow. "As the air gets warmer, the chance for snow lessens, which means we're looking at a chance for more frequent rain events in the Northeast and the Great Lakes region, in particular." And for other parts of the U.S., including the Midwest, Southeast, and the plains, "this unfortunately really ramps up the potential for severe weather," she says.
But as we all know, the turbulence of spring is to be expected, and it's really the transition seasons that are the most difficult to predict, Waldman notes. "These transition seasons tend to be a lot harder to pin down because we can have these big ups and downs," she explains.
The worst of winter weather is behind us.
But the good news is, at the very least, "The big cold blasts like what we saw in mid-February are definitely behind us at this point, because now that it's mid-March, we've got the same sun angle as mid-September, and in mid-April, it's the same sun angle as mid-August," Waldman says.
So, even if your particular region experiences some snowfall this spring, she notes that thanks to the angle of the sun, any snow that does fall isn't going to stick around long. At this point, "It's more of a psychological season where, yes, it still can snow and we can still get these tastes of winter—but it's becoming more and more difficult for these kinds of patterns to hang on for more than a day or two."
What does this mean for spring allergies?
Now, if you're someone who struggles with seasonal allergies, particularly during spring, here's where you'll want to pay attention. Waldman tells mbg we're coming out of a relatively wet winter, and some of the outlooks she's seen are calling for a warmer than normal, and wetter than normal, spring.
"When it comes to allergies, wetter than normal can aggravate mold allergies," she says, "but it may keep pollen levels low."
However, at the same time, since we may be looking at a warmer spring, trees and other flowering plants may start producing allergens even sooner. "From what I've seen," she notes, "there are places in the southeastern U.S. that are flowering much sooner than normal, so allergy season may get kind of an early kick." As such, she recommends starting to get back into your seasonal allergy regimen right about now.
The bottom line.
It seems we can all expect a good amount of rainfall this year and potentially some warmer spring temps, too. Nevertheless, spring is always a beautiful season, full of rebirth and blooming, so we all ought to enjoy it while it lasts.
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