Why April and May seem to have switched

Posted at 2:48 PM, May 09, 2017

April was the 11th warmest April on record across the United States according to NOAA.

The warmth was especially felt in parts of the Mid-Atlantic and Midwest where it was the warmest April on record.

April's usually a month with plenty of ups and downs, and it's typically wetter across much of the country.

And while the rain was there for most states, the temperatures felt more like May or even June at some times.

But now that it's May, it seems Mother Nature has turned back the clock, making up for the lack of the standard April weather.

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In the first half of May, all but the Northern Plains and along the eastern edge of the Rocky Mountains is expected to experience cooler than average temperatures, meaning nearly everyone will get weather conditions they should've gotten a month ago.

One of the reasons for the flip-flop is the jet stream, and its erratic nature during the spring months.

In the spring, the jet stream is in transition, moving from its winter position across the southern United States to its summer position farther north across Canada.

As it's traveling farther north, the jet stream bends and buckles.

In April, the jet stream dipped farther south in the western half of the United States while it buckled to the north in the eastern half of the country.

This caused a slightly cooler pattern in the West and a warmer pattern in the East.

Now, that pattern has shifted, and the warmer air is getting squeezed in the middle of the country while east of the Plains and west of the Rockies is feeling some early spring chill.

This pattern looks like it won't last long, however. The second half of May appears warmer for nearly everyone east of the Rocky Mountains. The West Coast will continue to feel a little on the cool side.

Perhaps it'll begin to feel more like summer next month. Maybe then Mother Nature will have made up her mind.

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