MARQUETTE, Mich. (WJMN) – January is usually the coldest month in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, but this year has been a little different.

The average high for the month is usually around the lower 20s and the average low is usually in the single digits.

“So far this year since right after that cold blast around Christmas we’ve been stuck in an incredibly mild pattern for U.P. standards,” said Matt Zika, a Meteorologist with the National Weather Service. “Temperatures so far for the month of January have averaged around 10 degrees above normal. So, it’s pretty significant if we look historically, I mean, we’re on pace right now to have one of our warmest Januarys on record.” 

With temperatures being above average, we have seen a lot less snow and a lot more puddles and ice on the roads. So, why are we seeing these unseasonable temperatures?

“Ever since the really big cold blast that affected the entire United States around Christmas time, we’ve been stuck in a pattern with a very strong west to east jet stream,” said Zika. “And with that very strong west to east jet stream, it’s kept the very cold air locked well up over northern Canada and prevented it from moving south and thus we’ve just been in this pacific type air with no really cold anomalies or cold blasts of air that have come down across the Great Lakes over the last couple of weeks.”

Although we might be enjoying the milder weather, when can we expect those temperatures to fall back to normal?

“Looking out at the weather pattern now, as we move through this upcoming weekend and into next week there are signs that the pattern will become a little bit more favorable for colder air to start to sink southward from Canada,” said Zika. “I think as we head into the last week of January, through the beginning of February, signs point to a much more normal stretch of temperature weather. In addition, there are some signs too that the weather pattern may become a bit more active during that stretch so it’ll at least bring the opportunity for some more systems to bring snowfall or widespread snow to parts of the upper great lakes.”

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