Spring starts cool in the Finger Lakes

finger lakes weather forecast cold start to spring icy trees below normal temperatures sunny
Temperatures will bottom out on Wednesday when daytime wind chills will barely be above 0 degrees. [Photo by Dagmar Nearpass]
Temperatures will be near normal Monday and Tuesday but will turn sharply colder for Wednesday.

Weather for the First Days of Spring

Spring has officially begun in the Finger Lakes, even if February was a lot more spring-like than what the region looks like now.

The trend of generally cool temperatures will continue for the first week of Spring, with only Tuesday managing to sneak a few degrees above normal.

High pressure is overhead to start the day today with clear skies and cool temperatures. A band of clouds and mixed precipitation is working into western New York as of 8 am.

Temperatures will warm quickly ahead of this band of precipitation, jumping into the 30s over the next couple of hours. This should keep the precipitation mixed, or even turn it to mostly rain as it works its way through during the late morning hours. Precipitation amounts will be light and the precipitation should not last very long before it moves east.

Temperatures will continue to rise this afternoon, topping out just above 40 degrees, which is close to, if not a couple degrees shy of normal.

Skies will be mostly cloudy this afternoon and evening with a few more rain showers, especially this evening. Some snow may mix in later tonight as temperatures fall back towards 30 degrees.

Tuesday will be fairly quiet, with clouds, a few breaks of sun, and temperatures in the mid and upper 40s.

Quick Shot of Arctic Air Wednesday

A cold front will press south across the Finger Lakes Tuesday night. Some snow showers may accompany the front, followed by some lake effect flurries into early Wednesday morning. Accumulations should be minimal.

The bigger story will be the bitter cold that arrives on Wednesday. Temperatures Wednesday morning will start in the upper teens but will have a hard time rising at all during the day. Look for daily high temperatures to only be near 20 degrees. However, it will not even feel that warm.

Winds will gust between 30-40 mph during the day on Wednesday, sending the wind chills into the single digits, even during the afternoon hours. On the bright side, skies should become sunny throughout the day.

Those clear skies will allow temperatures to fall Wednesday night, with morning lows Thursday ranging from near 10 degrees close to the Finger Lakes to below zero readings in the colder outlying areas. Normal low temperatures, for comparison, are in the 20s for this time of March.

The good news is that the cold air will not be sticking around. Sunny skies and a shift in the wind towards the south will push temperatures to near 30 degrees on Thursday. Friday will get to near 40 degrees as clouds and showers from the next system move back into the Finger Lakes.


Follow Meteorologist Drew Montreuil:
Meteorologist Drew Montreuil has been forecasting the weather in the Finger Lakes region since 2006 and has degrees in meteorology from SUNY Oswego (B.S. with Honors) and Cornell (M.S.). Drew and his wife have four young boys. When not working or playing with the boys, he is probably out for a run through the countryside.