Spring missed her cue

March 26, 2013 

It’s cold comfort, but Sir Walter Wally was more than right. Raleigh’s groundhog prognosticator predicted six more weeks of winter on Feb. 2.

Charlotte’s groundhog, Queen Charlotte, got it wrong. In Ohio, a prosecutor filed a lighthearted indictment against Pennsylvania’s famous groundhog Punxsutawney Phil for “fraudulently” predicting an early spring. Butler County Prosecutor Mike Gmoser dropped the charge Tuesday, despite several inches of snow falling in Ohio this week. But Phil’s underlying offense is not going away: Spring has not come early. A week after it officially began, it still hasn’t come.

Snow fell in North Carolina’s mountains Monday and Tuesday, closing schools. In the Triangle, it’s near freezing at night and days still require a jacket. Some pedestrians are wearing gloves.

Scott Sharp, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Raleigh, said every day for the past two weeks except one has been 5 to 10 degrees below normal with six days dipping to 10 to 15 degrees below normal.

“This is definitely a very cool start to spring,” said Sharp, who encountered snow flurries in Raleigh a few days ago. “I’m ready for some warmth.”

We’re all ready, but the Canadian cold is expected to keep flowing south. Easter Sunday will be chilly and another blast of cold air is coming next week, Sharp said.

The blooming of the Triangle’s azaleas and dogwoods will be delayed by the cold, but that may make for a big show once spring finally strolls in.

“We may see things burst all at once when we do get that warm stretch,” Sharp said, but added, “If we get that warm stretch.”

If? How far off is spring?

Maybe it’s time to ask Sir Walter Wally again.

News & Observer is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service