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Mid-March Heat Threatens Records In Western U.S.

UPDATED 9:30 AM PDT (MST), March 14, 2013

UPDATED By WeatherBug Meteorologist, Seth Carrier

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While the eastern U.S. continues to be stuck in winter mode, a big warm-up is taking place in the West with temperatures more reminiscent of late spring.

A large dome of high pressure will become entrenched in the Four Corners through this weekend. Strong southerly winds blowing off the Mexican Plateau will help bring temperatures to near-record values for places as far north as the Great Basin.

The unseasonable warm-up will really get cranking today and Friday. Highs in the 80s and 90s will be seen across inland Southern California, as well as in the Desert Southwest. Reno is expected to warm into the 80s, as Phoenix aims for the lower 90s. As for record highs, it appears that today and Friday will be the days when the most records will fall across the West. Here`s a look at some forecast highs and record highs for various locations:

  • Tucson, Ariz.: Forecast High today: 90, Record High: 87 in 2007
  • St. George, Utah: Forecast High today: 82, Record High: 85 in 1934
  • Phoenix: Forecast High Today: 92; Record High: 91 in 2007
  • Downtown Los Angeles: Forecast High today: 82; Record High: 88 in 1951

  • The unusual heat will loosen its grip somewhat in southern California and the Great Basin moving into the weekend, but the Desert Southwest will still stay warm with highs in the 90s expected through Sunday.

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