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Today's Weather Outlook

UPDATED 9 AM EST, March 7, 2012

By WeatherBug Sr. Meteorologist, James West

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March is continuing its roller-coast ride across the U.S. as the daily highs rocket up and plunge day-to-day.

WeatherBug Meteorologist Todd Nelson has the latest in his exclusive WeatherBug National Outlook.

The spring warm-up seen Tuesday across the central U.S., where temperatures reached into the 70s as far north as the Missouri Valley, will begin to be shoved east today. The warmest temperatures this afternoon will be found across Texas, the Gulf Coast and Florida, where highs will reach into the 80s under a bright March sun.

Large stretches of the southern Plains, central and lower Mississippi Valley, South and Southeast will see highs in the 70s, with the southern Great Lakes, Ohio Valley and the Mid-Atlantic getting into the low to mid-60s. This will be a nice jump compared to the 40s and 50s seen on Tuesday. Accompanying the warm air will be gusty southwest winds.

A cold front will streak across the northern Plains and Upper Midwest throughout the day. It is touching off a few snow showers in the Dakotas with a few rain showers and a wintry mix later today for the western Great Lakes. Total snow accumulation will be a couple inches, so slick roads will be the only real trouble from this system. High temperatures behind the front will only be the 20s and 30s across the Dakotas and the northern Rockies.

A few bursts of snow will fall across the highest elevations of Utah, Wyoming and western Colorado. Up to a foot will be possible, but it will generally be at elevations higher than the local passes. The snow will keep temperatures from rising too much out of the 20s.

West of the Rockies, plenty of sunshine will produce a quiet and pleasant day for the Desert Southwest, California, and the entire Northwest and northern Intermountain West. The penalty for the sunny weather will be cooler than normal temperatures. Highs will only be in the upper 50s and low 60s in Los Angeles and San Francisco, with 40s and 50s found throughout the Northwest, Great Basin and even in the Southwest. In Las Vegas and Phoenix, the plunge into the upper 50s to lower 60s will amount to a 20-degree change from Tuesday`s warmth.

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