80-degree temps not far off; freezing temps a thing of the past?

We are officially past the midway point of April. So we can expect warmer temperatures and less in the way of "cold" temperatures, right? Not necessarily, but the chances of truly "cold" temps are getting much lower as each day passes.

Median last freeze event. NWS
The typical last time we see a temperature at or below 32° in Michiana is between April 21st and 30th. This is based on data from the climatological period of 1981-2010. It's not a guarantee by any means that our last 32-degree day will fall between those dates, but history tells us it should.

Average last freeze. NWS
We can break it down even further, though. The average last freeze when using data from the period 1981-2010 occurs on April 25th in South Bend, April 29th in Goshen and May 12th in Benton Harbor. We aren't far from those dates, which means our chance of seeing subfreezing temperatures is dropping considerably. Believe it or not, though, we've seen freezing temperatures as late as May 29th in South Bend and June 22nd in Benton Harbor! Those dates are very late for freezing temps, and are considered outliers.

Median last day with temps at or below 28°. NWS
For "hard freezes," the dates are even earlier. Typically we see our last day with temperatures at or below 28° between April 11th and 20th. That would mean we've likely seen our last hard freeze of the season. Looking ahead, that looks to be the case. Over the next 14 days, the probability of temperatures below 30° is very low. There are some hints of a morning or two featuring lows flirting with 32°-35° this Saturday and again into the middle of next week. 

80-degree temperatures in South Bend. NWS
So we know our chances of freezing temperatures are decreasing, but what about those nice and toasty 80-degree temps? Well, they shouldn't be far off. South Bend's average first 80-degree day is April 26th! Of course, we've been nowhere near that mark since October of last year, so even thinking about the 80s may seem odd. Unfortunately, the pattern for the remainder of April does not look favorable for 80s in Northern Indiana and Southern Michigan.

First 80-degree day for the last 5 years. NWS
Will we see warm temperatures? Yes, there are some 60s and 70s ahead for the second half of April. Will we see 80s? That's more on the unlikely side. If we don't see 80° until May 8th, it would be the latest first 80-degree day since 2014! We saw 80° in mid-April in 2015, 2016 and 2017. Hang tight, though. The likelihood of 80s rises to pretty much the "guaranteed" category by the second week of May! 

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