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Tuesday breaks north country record highs


It may have been four days into December, but there was hardly a winter coat in sight.

Record high temperatures were set throughout the north country Tuesday.

According to the National Weather Service:

nWatertown hit a record high of 69 degrees, beating 1982’s 63-degree record.

n Lowville hit a record high of 63 degrees, beating 1982’s 61-degree record.

n Massena hit a record high of 67 degrees, beating 1982’s 63-degree record.

“Your average high should be 40 degrees,” Buffalo NWS meteorologist James A. Mitchell said of Watertown. “That’s about a 29-degree difference.”

According to Mr. Mitchell, a high-pressure ridge sat over the area for several days, trapping cool air in Canada and warm air in the U.S. The ridge also prevented moisture from escaping, creating all-day rain showers Sunday and cloudy skies Monday.

However, the warm weather won’t stay for very long.

“Tomorrow will be a really rude awakening for people who really don’t want to see the cold,” Mr. Mitchell said Tuesday. “We’ll go from early September back to December overnight.”

As the jet stream makes its way eastward, cold air from Canada will shift down over the border, dropping temperatures into the 30s on Thursday and the lower 40s over the weekend. Snow showers are expected south of Watertown and southeast of Lake Ontario, but Mr. Mitchell said significant accumulation is not expected.

Snow showers also are expected throughout St. Lawrence County, according to Michael J. Muccilli, NWS meteorologist in Burlington, Vt.

Rain will replace most of the snow into the weekend.

“There’s a storm system coming from the West, bringing in a mix of rain, snow and sleet,” Mr. Muccilli said.

He said the rest of the month is looking warmer than average for St. Lawrence County, although not nearly as warm as Tuesday.

That prediction is not the same for Jefferson and Lewis counties, however.

“We’re probably going to be above average for the next 10 days, but temperatures will probably average out later in the month,” Mr. Mitchell said.

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