Often times wave patterns develop in the high atmosphere, the strongest winds in these waves are represented by the jet stream. These waves in the air, like waves in the ocean, have high and low points over time and space. From a geographical perspective the high point usually supports high pressure and the low points low pressure or storms. On the western side of the high pressure or ridging it’s usually warm and winds blow from the south, close to the center of the low point or trough of the wave there is storminess. When patterns like this develop to the extreme, with great definition contrast in the waves, in the wintertime there can be awesome extremes. One such extreme case happened On March 20, 1948. A trough or dip in the wave caused a massive storm to hit Alaska dumping heavy snow in Juneau, the states capitol, where 32.5” of snow fell the heaviest ever there from one storm. Meanwhile far to the east in the eastern part of the US, a ridge, or rise in the jet stream, resulted in record warmth across the Carolinas. In some places like Raleigh and Greensboro, NC the mercury barely dipped below 70 for a low temperature setting records for the warmest March night ever recorded there.
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