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Weather pattern confirmed
Early spring may already be here
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Forsyth County News


Though Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow Thursday morning in Pennsylvania, a Georgia groundhog, General Beauregard Lee, did not.

On Groundhog’s Day, if the furry critter sees his shadow, that’s considered a prediction for six more weeks of winter.

Gwinnett County’s groundhog affirmed what the warmer-than-normal temperatures the north Georgia area has been experiencing for some time, said Mike Leary, spokesman for the National Weather Service in Peachtree City.

“That groundhog’s pretty smart,” Leary said.

This season, temperatures have been about 5 to 10 degrees warmer than area winter averages, he said.

Last month, Cumming had an average high of about 54 degrees, with an average low of 33, according to the weather service.

In 2011, January’s average high was about 46 degrees, while the low was about 26.

The upcoming weekend temperatures should be “nice,” Leary said, with lows in the 40s and highs in the lower 50s.

The forecast, however, calls for a 50 percent chance of rain today and Saturday.

The area has seen wetter winter weather than usual, Leary said, with about 1 to 1.5 inches of rainfall above normal.

Current weather patterns don’t indicate a cold snap any time soon, he said, but history shows that temperatures have fallen before winter’s end in the area.

“There’s always the possibility of cold weather,” he said.