Winter is coming: here’s what you need to know about long-term weather forecasts
Of the winter outlooks issued by meteorologists so far, most agree that the southern United States will be drier and warmer than normal, with the best chance of colder and stormier conditions than the normal in the northern part, the Midwest and the Ohio Valley. These projections reflect typical conditions that develop during La Niña events, which are associated with episodic cooling of ocean waters in the tropical Pacific. This year, La Niña is expected to prevail for a third consecutive winter.
Whether you’re a fan of snow, here’s the latest roundup of what meteorologists are saying about the weather for the coming months. For entertainment purposes, we also summarize the outlook from the Farmers’ Almanac and its rival, the Old Farmer’s Almanac – but meteorologists place little importance on these predictions.
Although the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s official winter forecast won’t be released for a few weeks, the agency’s Climate Prediction Center publishes official temperature and precipitation forecasts up to 13 months in advance.
For the first three months when winter conditions begin in earnest – November, December and January – it shouldn’t be unusually cold anywhere in the country. Much of the country, from the East Coast to the Sun Belt and the West Mountain, is expected to experience above normal temperatures, with the highest likelihood of abnormal heat in Arizona and New Mexico.
Of February to April, above normal temperatures are expected to continue along the eastern seaboard, in the southeast and in the southwest, with the greatest chance of warmer weather along the mid-Atlantic and southeast coasts as well than in parts of the southwest. Below average temperatures are forecast for the northern contiguous United States, stretching from northern Michigan to northern Washington State.
As for precipitation, the November through January period is expected to bring below-average precipitation — and therefore a reduced chance of snow and rain early in the season — across much of the southern half of the United States. , with the highest chance of below-normal precipitation forecast. from the coast of South Carolina and Florida to the coasts of extreme southern California. Above normal precipitation is possible in northwestern Montana, northern Idaho and northeastern Washington.
Of February to April, below normal precipitation is forecast for the Southwest and coastal parts of the Southeast, but areas like Texas could see a respite from below normal snowfall and precipitation. A broad swath of above normal precipitation is forecast for the Ohio Valley, an area that could receive above normal snowfall if temperatures remain cold enough.
AccuWeather winter forecast
AccuWeather’s official forecast for the American winter 2022-2023 is rather bleak for snow lovers. AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Paul Pastelok and his team say the pattern for this winter is complicated by several other factors, including the Hunga Tonga volcanic eruption in early 2022.
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AccuWeather forecasters predict a more active severe thunderstorm season in the southeastern states during the winter months, fueled by warmer than normal ocean temperatures.
Pastelok told AccuWeather that these warmer ocean temperatures could help fuel a “potentially large system” that could affect the East Coast in the second half of winter. But in general, AccuWeather predicts a down year for snowfall along the east coast.
While AccuWeather predicts that snowfall will be suppressed, the company doesn’t necessarily expect precipitation to be below normal as well, with milder temperatures bringing several rain events this winter. These storms could cause flooding in the Ohio Valley and along the Mississippi River, he predicted.
During the second half of winter, AccuWeather expects colder conditions to finally enter the country and drop chilly air across the central United States, bringing heavy snowfall to some areas. parts of the central plains and the Rocky Mountains. In the West, generally dry conditions will do little to alleviate the region’s persistent drought.
How will the Hunga Tonga volcanic eruption play into the forecast? AccuWeather says lingering water vapor in the atmosphere from the eruption could cause a warmer-than-normal winter, but it’s unclear how big the effect could be.
Weather.com Winter Outlook
from Weather.com official winter outlook – like NOAA and AccuWeather – are calling for above-normal temperatures in the south while far northern regions of the continental United States manage to stay below average, conditions driven by this year’s La Niña .
December is considered the coldest month on the East Coast, with colder than normal temperatures expected from the Great Lakes to parts of the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast. On the other side of the country, temperatures in the Southwest and the Rocky Mountains are expected to be well above average.
In January, most of the country is mild with cooler temperatures further north and serious cold penetrating the Upper Midwest and Great Lakes region in February, while the southeast, particularly towards Florida, heats.
WeatherBell’s winter forecast
The winter outlook from WeatherBell Analytics, a meteorological consulting firm, should put more pep in the approach of snow lovers. The firm predicts normal to slightly below normal temperatures for most of the country from November 2022 to March 2023.
The coldest temperatures are expected in the Ohio Valley in the Upper Midwest, where temperatures are expected to be 1 to 3 degrees below normal.
Warmer temperatures are predicted for the West; WeatherBell forecast temperatures 1 to 3 degrees above normal in the southwest. This part of the country is also expected to see less snow than normal – an area that includes some popular California ski resorts.
WeatherBell is forecasting slightly above normal snowfall, 125% of the seasonal average, in the Midwest, across the Ohio Valley and in the Northeast Interior. It is also calling for above normal snowfall towards the East Coast.
Farmers Almanac Forecast
The Farmers Almanac winter snow forecast predicts an early start to winter, with a cold and stormy December. This storm is not expected to slow down in the eastern half of the country, with the almanac suggesting snowy conditions in the northeast. Along the Interstate 95 corridor, which is often the rain-snow line for major storms, the Farmers’ Almanac suggests more snow than rain.
In the southeast, the Farmers’ Almanac says its east coast storm forecast parade is most likely to bring rain, although cold conditions entering the region in January could also bring winter precipitation. . The Farmers’ Almanac indicates that temperatures in the southeast and northeast are expected to become milder in February, however.
Conditions are expected to be ‘freezing’ in the Upper Midwest, with the Farmer’s Almanac suggesting there will be plenty of snow and cold conditions for winter lovers, including the possibility of a White Christmas. In mid-January, the Farmers’ Almanac predicts temperatures could drop to as low as 40 degrees below zero in parts of the region.
The Farmers’ Almanac predicts that March will go like a lion, with a variety of conditions – from heavy snowfall to showers to gusty thunderstorms – expected across the country.
Forecast from the Old Farmer’s Almanac
The Old Farmer’s Almanac predicts a divided nation – with harsh winter conditions in the eastern United States and mild weather in the west. In the west, although temperatures are mild, above-average rainfall could help alleviate the lingering drought in the region.
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To the east, the almanac predicts above-average snowfall for a wide region, from North Carolina to central New England, through the Ohio and Tennessee valleys, as well as the great plains.
The almanac predicts cold and wet conditions even in Florida, with the worst cold forecast for January it says temperatures there could drop 4 degrees below normal for the month, which could lead to a damaged citrus crop and frozen iguanas.