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Daryl Ritchison, WDAY, Published April 30 2013

Weather Talk: Area sees big drop this year in March-April average temp

The period of March through April 2012 was the warmest such period on record. The average temperature for those two months was 44.8 degrees, which surpassed the previous record for that stretch set in 1910 by 1.1 degrees.

One year later, March and April 2013 will not rank as the coldest such period on record, but it was close. Preliminary numbers for the past two months suggest an average temperature of 25.5 degrees, which ranks that stretch as the third-coldest since records began in 1881. The only colder first two months of spring were in 1888, with an average temperature of 25.2 degrees, and 1893, when the average temperature was significantly colder at 22.8 degrees.

The year with the latest ice-out date on many area lakes was 1950. That year the average temperature in March and April was 27 degrees, which now ranks as tied for the eighth-coldest on record.

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