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Meteorological spring ends on warm side

CARIBOU, Maine — Meteorologists at the National Weather Service in Caribou said June 21 that computations showed this year’s meteorological spring finished with above average temperatures. Residents also saw precipitation that was higher than normal during that period.

Meteorological spring is the three-month period from March through May.

A total of 35.3 inches of snow was recorded in Bangor, making it the sixth snowiest winter on record. In Caribou, 34.9 inches of snow fell, ranking it as the 21st snowiest winter in the city.

Temperatures on whole were above average, with Caribou recording its 16th warmest spring on record, and it was the 23rd warmest spring in Bangor.  

Initially, March saw higher than normal temperatures, but these were much colder in the second half of the month. The second half of the month averaged approximately 4 degrees colder than the first half. There were two major snowstorms in March. The first occurred on March 7-8, with 8-14 inches recorded across the region. On March 13-14, the biggest snowstorm of the winter occurred across much of the downeast region and central highlands, dumpking 18-25 inches. Bangor and central Piscataquis County picked up amounts as high as 30 inches.

The snowpack at the end of the month ranged from 18 to 25 inches across central and northern areas, and from a trace to 10 inches across the downeast region.

April began with below average temperatures for the first half. According to forecasters, April 1-15 ranked as the third coldest on record at Houlton, the fourth coldest in Millinocket, the fifth coldest in Caribou and the seventh coldest in Bangor.

The lowest temperature of 12 degrees was observed in Caribou on the morning of April 15, breaking the previously established record of 13 degrees that was set in 1981.

Temperatures were much milder during the second half of April, when Caribou south to Bangor observed a temperature of 60 degrees on April 23.

It was the third wettest April on record at Caribou and the 16th wettest at Bangor. Above average rainfall contributed to significant flooding in parts of Aroostook County.

Though the weather warmed up toward the end of the month, meteorologist Mark Bloomer of the NWS Caribou office said the average temperature for April still remained below average.

The average temperature for April is 40.8 degrees in Bangor and 35.8 degrees in Caribou, Bloomer said. The average temperature this April was 38.3 degrees in Bangor and 33.8 in Caribou. There was still 12 to 18 inches of snow on the ground in parts of the north woods by the end of the month, with patches of snow east into northeast Aroostook County.

May finished with above average temperatures and below normal precipitation, and there was a significant temperature disparity. The warmest day, when temperatures exceeded 90 degrees in some areas, did not come until the end of the month.

Although temperatures as a whole were above average, the air mass was very dry, with frequent frosts and below-freezing temperatures. May saw six nights that registered 32 degrees or lower at Caribou, the most since 2007.

Precipitation ranged from 55 to 70 percent of average, with lengthy periods with no significant rainfall.

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