People in southern California are experiencing unusually hot temperatures right now, and face a wintertime heat advisory this weekend, but people in much of the rest of the U.S. continue to deal with cold temperatures, snow, and ice. As a result, and what usually happens at this time of year, people begin counting down the days until spring.
That inevitably raises the question, “What will spring be like this year?”
To help answer that question, the Farmers’ Almanac has — right on time — released its spring weather forecast. Interestingly, it includes a forecast for “backward temperatures,” or what some people call a backward, or reverse, spring this year.
Keep reading to learn what you can expect in your local area this spring, as well as what a “backward spring” really means.
Meteorologically, spring begins on March 1, because the year is divided into four seasons, with each season being three months long. The astronomical definition of spring is different, however, because astronomical seasons begin with equinoxes and solstices that explain when Earth has reached a new milestone position in its annual orbit around the sun. Astronomically, in the Northern Hemisphere, spring will arrive at precisely 11:33 a.m. Eastern, on Sunday, March 20, this year, which is the spring, or vernal, equinox.
Regardless of the terminology, the question on peoples’ minds is “what’s the weather going to be like next month?”
“Spring has a way of keeping us on our toes. While many of us will be looking forward to the end of winter, spring temperatures may take their time arriving,” the Farmers’ Almanac explains. “According to our long-range outlook, temperatures will be slow to warm. In fact, around the time of the vernal equinox, unseasonably cold temperatures may be gripping many parts of the country.”
First, northern states will experience what’s considered near-normal temperatures. On the other hand, southern states will experience “somewhat cooler-than-normal conditions,” according to the Farmers’ Almanac’s forecast.
You can find the average temperature for your local location here.
Here’s where the backwards part comes in.
“Interestingly, we think the second half of May will be unseasonably cool across large parts of the nation,” according to the Farmers’ Almanac. “Many will likely refer to it as a ‘backward spring,’” because temperatures have gotten cooler rather than warmer as spring progresses.
What About Rain?
The Farmers’ Almanac’s spring forecast calls, in general, for a wetter than normal spring across much of the U.S. Indeed, people in the Great Lakes, Ohio Valley, Midwest, and south central states should expect more rain than normal this spring.
Conversely, people in the northeast and southwest can expect a drier than usual spring, according to the forecast.
Finally, if you’re in, or plan to be in, what’s considered the Rockies and Plains in late April, get ready for a major storm. “It will be a veritable ‘meteorological swizzle stick,’ stirring up everything from snow to wind, rain, and severe thunderstorms, possibly even spawning a few tornadoes,” the Farmers’ Almanac forecasts.
OK, But What About Canada?
If you live in or regularly visit Canada, you’re used to mud, slush, and even snow as spring begins. This year will be no different, according to the Farmers’ Almanac.
“For spring 2022, our long-range weather outlook is calling for a slow warm up with a major late-season winter storm (yes, snow!) predicted for the final week of April, over the Rockies and Prairies,” the spring forecast notes. “Overall though, spring should see near-normal temperatures with possibly the more northern areas experiencing warmer temperatures than the southern areas. Thus, the backward spring.”
Finally, much of Canada will experience normal levels of rain this spring.
There are two exceptions, however, according to the forecast. First, Quebec and the Maritimes can expect less rain than usual this spring. On the other hand, the area around the Great Lakes will see more rain this spring than usual, according to the Farmers’ Almanac.
As you start to — or continue to — think about spring’s arrival, be sure to read all of our Spring Travel coverage, including:
- 5 Must-See Springtime Natural Wonders
- 9 Wonderfully Warm Places To Visit In April
- 12 Wonderfully Warm Places To Visit In March
You can also find all of our Outdoor Activities coverage here.