A brush with winter and smattering of sleet and frozen rain in Northeast Georgia on Friday followed a week of cold that felt like ... well, January.
But after a brief dance with Jack Frost, area residents were glad to shed some of their warm layers and enjoy a day of sunshine and relative warmth Saturday, with even warmer days to come.
“We love it because we’re outdoorsy,” said Gayla Burt as she and her 4-year-daughter, Grace Ivey, visited Wilshire Trails Park in Gainesville.
“We were (gladly) surprised about the weather today. It is quite a difference from Friday to today.”
Though Saturday’s high only reached a seasonal 53 degrees, it felt balmy compared to Friday’s icy, wet chill that barely nosed above freezing for much of the day.
Austin Floyd said he brought his 5-year-old daughter, Avery Floyd, out to the park to enjoy the day because it took him by surprise.
“I thought it was going to be cold and gray today,” Floyd said. “So we’re out here enjoying the day, trying to catch this good weather before it gets cold again.”
Today will remain brisk, with a mix of sun and clouds and a high that should reach 50. But it’s the start of a warming trend that should see temperature reach the mid-50s by the start of the work week Monday, then up to the low to mid-60s by Tuesday.
Even better, skies will be clear for the most part, with no chance of rain until late Tuesday into Wednesday.
Though Friday’s predicted ice storm brought little precipitation to most of the area, a wetter-than-normal January has done wonders for Lake Lanier’s dropping water level. The lake stood at 1,062.28 feet above sea level Saturday, nearly 5 feet higher than at the start of the year and closer to full winter pool of 1,070 feet.
Times staffer Charles Phelps contributed to this story.