The weather in the Western North Carolina Mountains the last few days has been everything but normal when it comes to the temperatures. The cold air is all thanks to a “Polar Vortex”. Bitter cold air from the Arctic caused temperatures to plunge below zero in many places. We’ve seen some of the lowest temperatures in over a decade with readings in the single digits. If that weren’t enough, the wind chill factors have been minus 20 to 30 below zero in the higher elevations. Schools, Businesses and Non-Profits have been forced to close due to cold air. Officials say they’ve responded to many calls over the last two days in regards heater related fires, frostbite and other respiratory conditions. Thousands of flights across the country were also canceled as a result of the crippling cold and a mixture of snow and ice. Nearly 14,000 flights were delayed or completely canceled. Luckily, spring like temperatures will return to the WNC mountains by this weekend.