(NEXSTAR) – Temperatures may not have budged from the triple digits where you live, but already forecasters are looking ahead to what type of weather we will see once fall turns to winter.
“It really depends where you are in the United States. It will vary by location,” explains NOAA climate scientist Michelle D’Heureux. “The southern tier during a La Niña is often drier than average during the winter, and that often extends into spring.”
A La Niña winter could have implications on storm activity, flooding and even drought, depending on where you live.
Last week, the Farmer’s Almanac broke out a series of predictions for the continental United States by region, based on their proprietary methodology. Here’s a look at some of the takeaways:
- The Central United States stretching from Canada to Texas could see well below normal temperatures for much of winter, with normal or slightly below normal projected along the East Coast. The Almanac does not predict a full repeat of the frigid chill that hit Texas and surrounding states early this year.
- The West and Pacific Northwest will likely see a typical winter weather pattern, including some big storms, but it won’t be enough to turn around the drought plaguing those states.
- The Almanac predicts many states will be hit with heavy precipitation in mid-January before milder conditions take over in February. March is expected to mirror the rest of the season, with periods of calm broken up by heavy storms.
The Farmer’s Almanac website offers more detailed projects broken out by region. But even if you are a believer, there’s reason to operate with caution before firming up your plans based on the analysis.
“Even though The Farmer’s Almanac can be correct in their prognosticating, it’s really not possible to predict what the second week of January will hold in terms of how snowy, stormy, or even how cold it’ll be. said digital meteorologist Christine Gregory from Nexstar’s WROC. “Long-range forecasting is not an exact science, but we can use clues such as teleconnections, statistics or other climate signals to make generalized predictions.”
NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center makes three-month projections available online. As of July 15th, they saw widespread warm temperatures coming for much of the fall, with dry conditions continuing in the West while the East and South see a chance for increased precipitation. Still, even those projections are not set in stone.
“Forecasts change because the weather changes every day,” said Gregory. “Any stray from the forecast will cause a ripple in every other forecast going forward.”