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John Wheeler, WDAY, Published January 14 2009

Weather Talk: Jet stream to give us break from bitter cold

About 30,000 feet above the ground, the wind of the polar jet stream has been set up from southwest to northeast this winter, allowing for frequent snows along with consistently below-average temperatures across the northern Plains.

In Fargo-Moorhead, it has been about 6 degrees below average since Dec. 1, and we’ve had more than 40 inches of snow. However, the present dump of arctic air represents a change in the jet stream pattern.

After the arctic air retreats this weekend, the jet stream is expected to resume a weaker, west-to-east flow pattern, giving us a break from bitter cold and heavy snow for a while.

But winter has a long way to go. The jet stream will likely shift again. More cold weather is likely. And there will certainly be more snow.

How cold and how much snow? We’ll have to wait and see. And watch the jet stream.


Have a weather question you’d like answered?

E-mail weather@wday.com, or write to WDAY Stormtracker, WDAY-TV, Box 2466, Fargo, ND 58108