BOSTON - January is typically one of the signature months of winter when, in most cold-weather climates, snow falls in droves and the temperatures plummet, often into the negatives. However, if you happened to step foot outdoors in New England over the past weekend, you might have been thoroughly baffled by what you were experiencing. Birds were chirping, the snow was melting, and the coat you had on over your clothes was completely unnecessary. Was it April already? Has spring already sprung? Did we somehow hibernate and completely bypass the winter?

Even though it felt like spring outside over the weekend, we are still in the throes of a New England weather. But for a brief two day period, we were given a reprieve from the punishing cold.

For only the third time since 1872, according to the Boston hub of the National Weather Service, temperatures in Boston climbed past 70 degrees in January. The 70-degree weather came on Saturday and the city followed up the warmth on Sunday with a 73-degree day. The previous record for January weekends in Boston was 62-degrees in 1975, meaning this was the first time in the history of Boston that two consecutive January days eclipsed the 70-degree mark.

According to David Epstein of WBUR, the reason for the warmth was a polar vortex in Canada. As a result of the extreme cold to the north, southern jet streams flowed smoothly throughout New England, bringing on the tropical/spring and summer vibes.

While many were quick to embrace the unexpected warmth at a time when New England weather can be so unforgiving, many were also concerned that the 70-degree weather was yet another consequence of a global climate in a state of flux and on the brink of disaster.

The period was still short-lived, however. Low temperatures are slated to drop down into the twenties and tens over the course of the week, with some days, even projected to bring a slew of snow back to the region. Now, it will really feel like January all over again!

Image via Wikimedia Commons