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55-60% chance of La Niña this fall and winter; what that means for us

We have already seen questions about what this winter will hold for us. While we can't say for sure just yet, there is one piece of new news that needs to be considered. The Climate Prediction Center said Thursday that there's a "55-60% chance" of a developing La Niña this fall and winter. 

What does a La Niña mean? It means that the ocean waters along the equatorial Pacific will be below normal. Why do we care about that? The ocean tendencies in this part of the world can oftentimes drive weather patterns in the continental US. 

In the case of a La Niña, the tendency is for there to be a less active storm track in the southern US and thus lesser precipitation. 

Weather is not one size fits all, though. I found 18 years since 1950 in which La Niña was documented. Out of those 18 years, 12 featured below average snowfall in our area. (I also found that 10 out of those 18 years were colder than average.) 

The most recent that we can find was just last year, actually, which featured a weak La Niña. 

If we were to take this verbatim, it would mean that we stand a 67% chance of below-average snowfall this winter (solely based off of observation and solely considering this one phenomenon). However, this isn't the only thing we take into account. We've got a while to go, before we go making our official snow forecast. 

In the meantime, this is the second thing we've begun to look at. The first was how active tropical seasons impact winter. Be sure to stay up to date with us, as we continue to look for signs about the upcoming winter.

Enjoy the nice summer-like weekend we have ahead! Full details on the more immediate forecast can be found here.


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