The end of the widespread summer warmth is near and autumn leaves will soon be turning and falling. This must mean that snowflakes aren’t terribly far away. The 2018-2019 Winter Forecast is coming into view.
Our last update did not have a ton of specifics. We are still thinking an El Nino pattern will develop for winter. There is still no El Nino in sight in the near future. The pattern across the equatorial Pacific Ocean is a not very far from average temperatures. We would like to see more warming for an El Nino to become official. Many computer models show this is likely to happen by December. A weak El Nino is likely.
Whenever making a seasonal forecast it’s important to look at overall patterns and trends.
One of the other things we look at for the winter forecast is analogs. These are past years that have similar weather patterns that match up to the current and recent conditions across the globe. We look for El Nino /La Nina, plus many other global atmosphere and ocean oscillation data called telleconnections.
Long range forecast computer models are the last things we consider. Many countries; Canada, USA, Japan, Australia and Europe all have their own weather models with different math equations used to process millions of variables. These computer models are showing a generally warm winter for a good part of the country, but again that’s only one part of it.
Forecasters take all of this information into consideration, plus their own knowledge and judgment. That is when the final outlook of precipitation and temperature trends comes out. This is a lot more than what likely goes into the Farmer’s Almanac outlook. It’s always a good idea to take these “Almanac Outlooks” with a grain of salt because they are normally drastic and have low accuracy rates.
Early Signs of Cold?
There is an above average amount of early season snow and ice cover near the North Pole. Some long-range guidance suggests that snow will become widespread in Canada and even in the Rockies by early November. We have been in a negative phase of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation.
The cool or negative phase of the PDO allows for some cooling from the California coast up into the Gulf of Alaska. The current phase is not very impressive, but it could slow down any big widespread warmth that will try to develop.
What’s The Outlook?
As of now it looks like an active storm track could occur for the southern United States. This would keep away much high pressure ridging and big warm ups. The Southeast actually might be fairly chilly and see some notable cold snaps. Dips in the jet stream should allow for above average wintry weather.
It looks like the warmth will hang on across the Northwest for much of the winter. Some nice balmy days in Spokane and Seattle in January will be appreciated. The Desert Southwest might end up in more of an up and down pattern not far from normal.
The best confidence for colder than normal weather is actually in Atlanta, Charlotte and Charleston. Add an active storm track together and it could be a snowy or maybe even icy winter at times. The Northeast will likely see some decent shots of cold air, but also moderate for several days at a time. New York City, Washington D.C. and Boston could deal with powerful Nor’easters.
Stay Tuned To Our 2018-2019 Winter Forecast Video In Late October
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