'Aug-tober' to Keep Summerlike Warmth in Parts of the Midwest, East

Brian Donegan
Published: October 13, 2017

Summerlike warmth is expected to continue in parts of the Midwest, South and East over the next one to two weeks, making many residents of these regions wonder if it's October or August.

(MORE: October Temperature Outlook)

The weather pattern that has persisted to some extent since mid-September is forecast to remain in place through at least mid-October, possibly into the end of the month. This consists of a large bulge in the jet stream, or upper-level ridge of high pressure, across the eastern U.S., allowing warmth to build and persist.

Meanwhile, a southward dip in the jet stream, or upper-level trough, has been stuck in the West, where the colder air has been locked in. In fact, Winter Storm Aiden brought the first accumulating snow of the season to Denver and other parts of the Front Range early this week.

This is the setup allowing summerlike warmth to continue in parts of the Midwest, South and East.

Another round of above-average warmth will engulf parts of the Midwest, South and East during the next several days.

(MORE: Warmth in the East, Snow in the West is Bad News for Leaf Peepers)

The warmth will peak into this weekend, when widespread highs and lows 10 to 20 degrees above average are forecast along and east of the Mississippi River.

This translates to temperatures reaching the 80s as far north as the Mason-Dixon Line and the Ohio Valley, with 70s in the lower Great Lakes and much of the Northeast. Lows will only dip into the 50s and 60s for most areas from the southern Great Lakes into the South and the East Coast.

Forecast Highs

A few daily record highs and record-warm low temperatures are likely in parts of the South, Midwest and Northeast through this weekend.

Temperatures will then return to near-average levels early next week, but another warming trend is possible across the same regions later next week.

(MAPS: 10-Day Forecast Highs/Lows)

Humid conditions, with dew points in the 70s, will remain in place for much of the South through this weekend, as dew points return to the 60s this weekend in parts of the Midwest and Northeast.

The air was downright soupy in the Ohio Valley, mid-Atlantic and Northeast during the Columbus Day weekend; dew points soared into the uncomfortable 70s as the remnants of Hurricane Nate raced northeast last Sunday into Monday.

A dew point above 70 degrees is more typical of the South in July or August, and a value above 60 degrees generally feels muggy in the northern states.

A few locations recorded dew points near 80 degrees Monday afternoon, which is uncommon to see even during the heart of summer, let alone in early October.

Hartford, Connecticut (69 degrees), and Worcester, Massachusetts (67 degrees), tied their all-time warmest low temperatures for the month of October last Sunday.

New York City (Central Park) just saw its longest October streaks of 70-degree-plus temperatures and 70-degree-plus dew points, while Washington D.C. tied its longest October streak of 70-degree-plus dew points.

Thanks to this soupy air, over 40 cities have tied or set new October monthly records for the warmest daily low temperature over the past week from South Florida to Maine. Some of these cities did so on back-to-back days last Sunday and Monday.

Red dots represent locations with at least a 60-year period of record that tied or set their October record-warmest daily low temperatures from Oct. 7-11, 2017.
(Data: NOAA/NWS)

The most notable of these record monthly lows include:

  • Asheville, North Carolina (71 degrees on Oct. 9), saw its first-ever October day in records dating to 1877 when the temperature failed to drop below 70 degrees.
  • Augusta, Georgia (78 degrees on Oct. 8), not only shattered its record-warmest October low, but would have also tied its record-warmest September low.
  • Charlotte, North Carolina (75 degrees on Oct. 9), tied its record-warmest September low, as well.

Dozens of locations from the Midwest to the East are currently experiencing a top-five warmest October on record through Oct. 11, according to the Southeast Regional Climate Center. This is a sharp contrast to the first 11 days of September, when many of these same locations saw temperatures persistently well below average before the pattern flipped.

(MORE: Through September, at Least 37 Locations on Pace for Record Warmth)

Those who are looking forward to the cooler temperatures more typical of fall will have to wait a bit longer in the eastern half of the nation.

The latest 6- to 10-day temperature outlook from NOAA's Climate Prediction Center suggests the above-average warmth will continue through at least the third week of October, with the greatest probability of above-average temperatures expected in the upper Midwest and Great Lakes regions.

The Weather Company’s primary journalistic mission is to report on breaking weather news, the environment and the importance of science to our lives. This story does not necessarily represent the position of our parent company, IBM.

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