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April was warmer, drier than normal

News Photos by Crystal Nelson TOP: Alpena resident Bill McClure walks along State Avenue on a cold and rainy Monday evening; BOTTOM: A mix of rain and fog moved through Squaw Bay early Monday morning. The first week of May is expected to be cooler than normal.

ALPENA — The month of April was a little warmer and a little drier than normal, according to meteorologists with the National Weather Service in Gaylord.

“Overall, the average temperature of the month was 43.3 degrees which is about 1.7 degrees warmer than normal,” Meteorologist Jeff Zoltowski said. “All the warmth was in the first half of the month, with a particularly warm stretch of weather from April 6 to April 11.”

The monthly high of 68 degrees was reported on April 9, although the warm day did not break any records, and the monthly low of 17 degrees was recorded on April 2, according to the weather service’s monthly climatology report.

There was a total of 1.96 inches of precipitation, 0.43 inches less than normal, which Zoltowski said was a little drier than normal. He said there was light rain throughout the month, with the heaviest rain falling on April 27 and into April 28, accounting for more than half of the total amount of rain for the month.

Zoltowski said it’s been relatively mild and relatively dry for most of the calendar year and there was no departure from that trend in April. He noted the trend has had an impact on the river and lake levels in the state.

Zoltowski said the stretch of cooler weather will continue during the first week of May. He said the temperatures are normally creeping to about 60 to 61 degrees this time of year in Alpena, but that the weather is expected to be in the 50s throughout the week.

Heading into the summer, Zoltowski said the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Climate Prediction Center has forecast equal chances of above, below or near normal temperatures and near normal precipitation for the month.

Zoltowski said NOAA’s forecast makes sense, given the start of the month.

“The longer range outlooks for the summer months — June, July and August — are somewhat above normal for temperatures and roughly near normal for precipitation,” he said.

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