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Easter was colder than Christmas

April 08, 2007

From staff reports

Easter Sunday was colder than Christmas Day, according to a Hagerstown weather observer.

Sunday's temperature hit a high of 38.6 degrees just after 3:30 p.m., and the low was 25.6 degrees, according to i4weather.net, which is maintained by Greg Keefer.

Fruit grower Donald Harding said Sunday was the coldest in a recent string of return-to-winter days. So far, his peach trees, which already are in bloom, seem to be weathering the artic blast.

"I don't see a lot of damage at this point, but it just can't keep going," said Harding, who owns Harding's Orchards in Smithsburg.

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Sunday's high temperature was more than 30 degrees colder than normal, according to AccuWeather meteorologist Alan Reppert.

Even the low temperature Dec. 25 was warmer than Sunday's low. The temperatures ranged from 27 degrees to 41 degrees on Christmas Day, www.i4weather.net says.

There were even trace amounts of snow over the weekend in Washington County, according to AccuWeather.

"A very cold air mass has been parked over us for a while," Reppert said.

Harding said he is worried about how his peach trees will react to a prolonged cold snap. With the warm weather this winter, the trees blossomed earlier than they normally do, making them particularly susceptible to an early-spring chill.

"They kind of woke up a little quick this year," Harding said. The trees often bloom in late April, he said.

Reppert said lower than normal temperatures were expected to remain throughout the week.

High temperatures through Friday are expected not to be warmer than the low 50s, with overnight lows in the 20s and 30s, Reppert said.

"It looks like nothing above normal for some time," he said.

Staff writers Erin Cunningham and Karen Hanna contributed to this story.

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