This past winter was the 4th and 5th warmest ever observed in Milwaukee and Madison, respectively. Now, both cities have set the record for the warmest spring (March-May).* The tables below show how Milwaukee and Madison rank among the Top 5 for each site. Notably, Milwaukee and Madison are a whopping 1.7 degrees and 1.5 degrees ahead of second place, respectively.
*Temperature records date back to 1871 in Milwaukee and 1869 in Madison.
The warmer than normal spring can be largely attributed to the record smashing March Wisconsin experienced. The average temperature this March, in Milwaukee, was 4.5 degrees warmer than the previous record warmest March, and at Madison, 4.9 degrees warmer. The astonishingly warm temperatures were largely due to a nearly stationary atmospheric pattern that set up over the Midwest, allowing warm air to continuously feed into the area. Our Top News Story about the record warmth this past March can be viewed here.
While this April was a bit warmer than normal, it actually had a cooler average temperature than this March (read more here). April's average temperature ranked the 39th warmest on record in Milwaukee and tied for the 42nd warmest in Madison.
While it may not have felt warm during its last few days, this May was quite warm overall. Milwaukee ranked the 5th warmest on record and Madison tied for 11th.
With a top 5 warmest winter and the warmest spring, it probably won't come as a surprise that Milwaukee and Madison are currently in first place for the warmest year to date by 1.7 and 1.6 degrees, respectively. It will be interesting to see just how long we can hold on to the first place position!