Area residents enjoy unusually warm November

Thursday, November 10, 2005

According to the recent temperatures, it's November going on May.

With midday highs in the 70s this week -- Tuesday set a new record of 81 -- Cape Girardeau-area residents have been making the most of the unseasonably warm weather.

A man was fishing at Cape Girardeau County Park. Children without jackets played in the Tot Lot at Capaha Park. Couples wearing shorts walked on the trail.

On Wednesday, which saw temperatures reach about 75 in the afternoon, the outdoors looked more like a typical May day than November, which usually brings with it temperatures in the 50s or lower.

"It's such a nice day," said Scott Hamilton, 25, of Kansas City, Mo. "I'm impressed. This is just awesome weather. I thought it'd be cold."

Hamilton, who was in the area to work on industrial equipment for several local companies, even stopped in at the county park to eat lunch outside on a pier. He then sat on the back of his pickup, kicked up his boots and worked on his laptop.

But what does the warm fall mean for the winter? Old wives tales go both ways -- that a warm fall will mean a nasty winter or that it means it will stay mild.

"It's a complicated question," said Brian Alworth, a meteorologist with KFVS12 in Cape Girardeau. "Some will say 'My grandmother says a warm fall means a cold winter,' or the other way around. In the long haul, there's actually very little correlation between one season to the next."

Alworth said there are exceptions, such as the case of a large-scale pattern like El Nino that will affect weather for months. That means, Alworth said, that the warm weather now might affect the winter if the same weather patterns hold up.

"Nobody's saying it's going to be 80 degrees all winter," he said.

Today, Alworth said, should hit a high of about 60 with a chance of rain by Sunday. Alworth said the average high for early November is 58.

Chris Noles, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Paducah, Ky., said the warm weather may stay -- at least for awhile.

"It will probably have an impact for the next month, month and a half, instead of all winter," he said.

He said the 90-day forecast for the entire region is warmer than usual, though probably not record-breaking.

Then, he says, will probably return to more normal temperatures.

"These weather patterns are hard to break out of sometimes," he said. "When we do break out of it, we may pay for it down the road."

The weather is nothing like the 2005 Farmer's Almanac predicted, which called for a stormy Missouri for early November, then fair and cold.

smoyers@semissourian.com

335-6611, extension 137

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