Another Polar Vortex Plunge - Local news, weather, sports Savannah | WSAV On Your Side

Another Polar Vortex Plunge

Here is an example of a huge polar vortex or upper level low over the Great Lakes. Here is an example of a huge polar vortex or upper level low over the Great Lakes.

It's the "Return of the Polar Vortex" over much of the eastern United States this week…  as another round of bitterly cold Arctic air plunges southwards out of Canada. Yippee right?! Just kidding!

Well… like many "sequels"…  this "Return of the Polar Vortex" will not be as impressive as the original… with temperatures averaging about ten degrees warmer than during a polar vortex blast earlier this month.

Here in the Coastal Empire and Low Country… we will see high temperatures from 10 to as much as 20 degrees below normal beginning tomorrow and continuing through Saturday!

The coldest air is centered over the Upper Midwest this morning… and low temperatures in portions of Minnesota… Wisconsin and Michigan dropped below -20° early this morning.

Crane Lake… Minnesota bottomed out at a -32°F this morning… and Pellston… Michigan hit -25°.

So what exactly is a polar vortex… you may wonder? A polar vortex is a large circulation in the upper atmosphere that has generally west-to-east winds circling the Earth.

It's not a cold wave. As the name implies… polar vortices…  are usually centered in the polar regions… one near the North Pole and another near the South Pole.

They are located in the middle and upper troposphere and the stratosphere. They surround the polar highs and lie in the wake of the polar front. These cold-core low-pressure areas strengthen in the winter and weaken in the summer due to their reliance upon the temperature differential between the equator and the poles.

They usually span less than 620 miles in which the air is circulating in a counter-clockwise fashion in the Northern Hemisphere.

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