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Last year unseasonably warm, according to National Weather Service

CARIBOU, Maine — Last year, Mainers saw unseasonably mild temperatures during several months of the year, according to the National Weather Service in Caribou. 

Mark Bloomer, meteorologist for the NWS in Caribou, said that he could not point to any specific cause for the mild temperatures in months like January, February and April. He said that a “very strong ridge in the subtropics” could have been a factor, but there could have been other measures at work as well.

“It is hard to point out just one cause,” he said Monday.

Temperatures in January averaged from 6.5 to 8 degrees above average. Bangor, Caribou and Houlton had their fourth, fifth and eighth (respectively) warmest January on record. A storm on Jan. 24 and Jan. 25 produced 4.2 inches of sleet at Presque Isle and was likely one of the all-time biggest sleet storms on record across northern Maine.

February was another month with above average temperatures, although it was not as warm as January. Temperatures in March ranged from 4 to 6 degrees below average, and snowfall was above average at both Caribou and Bangor by 5.3 and 6 inches respectively. On March 11, the high of 2 degrees at Houlton was the lowest high temperature ever observed during the month of March.

April temperatures were 1.5 to 3.5 degrees above average, making it the eight warmest April on record at Bangor and Caribou. By the end of the month, the only snow on the ground was generally across the higher elevations of far northern Maine.

In June, temperatures averaged from 0.5 degrees below average to 1.5 degrees above average across the region. Temperatures were very close to above average in July, while temperatures were five to six degrees above average in September.

October was the warmest on record across northern and eastern Maine with temperatures which averaged from 7 to 8.5 degrees above average. For the two month period of September through October it was the warmest on Caribou, Houlton, Millinocket and Bangor.

The year ended with below average temperatures, however. November saw temperatures that were 0.5 to 2 degrees below average and December saw the thermometer register numbers that were 4 to 7.5 degrees below average.

For the year as a whole, it ranked as the tenth warmest on record at Caribou and the 11th warmest at Bangor. A total of 43.01 inches of rain and melted snow was observed at Caribou which was the 14th wettest year on record. It was the 39th snowiest calendar year on record in Caribou, as 106.3 inches of snow was observed.

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