WASHINGTON, D.C. (Newsource) – The leaves are falling and temperatures are dropping across much of the country, but just how cold and snowy will it get this winter?
Americans in the northern tier of the country should brace themselves for cooler-than-average conditions, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration newly released winter weather outlook.
“We are favoring below normal temperatures for that season from the Pacific Northwest across the northern Rockies to the northern Plains further eastward to the western Great Lakes,” explains Jon Gottschalck with the NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center.
Precipitation chances, also up for northern states, the Great Lakes, and Ohio Valley, that could set the stage for some snow days.
“On average over the season we are favoring generally above normal snowfall for those generally colder and those wetter areas,” continued Gottschalck.
Not everyone in the U.S. will face a frosty future, much of the southern half of the country and along the Eastern Seaboard, will likely see warmer-than-average temperatures due to the anticipated reappearance of La Nina for a third consecutive year.
However, La Nina also puts a damper on precipitation, that means places already experiencing extreme drought like the west, great plains and parts of the southeast could see conditions persist or worsen.
“We tend to have drier than normal conditions along the southern tier of the U. S. And so that’s why drought expansion is predicted,” said Gottschalck.
But, winter weather is fickle fluctuations in La Nina along with changes in arctic oscillation patterns are harder to predict, so those wild winter events like polar vortexes and bomb cyclones can still drop in, and drop the temperature, despite the current outlook.