Warmer, but potentially wetter weather predicted for upcoming New England winter

Lucy Bush
October 22, 2017

NOAA said data favor wetter-than-average conditions across most of the northern US, from the Rocky Mountains to the Great Lakes.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released its region-based forecast for above and below average temperatures and precipitation.

Deputy director for NOAA's Climate Prediction Center Mark Halpert says La Nina conditions are likely to emerge...and that would impact winter weather conditions for much of the country.

La nina winters are not typically big snow makers.

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La Nina represents below average ocean temperatures in the equatorial Pacific. He added that, "Basically the effect of a larger scale climate pattern that's moving through because of La Niña doesn't really have an effect on what we might see from lake effect".

Last winter was one of the warmest on record, and there were still a number of significant snowstorms.

∙ The rest of the country falls into the equal chance category, which means they have an equal chance for above-, near-, or below-normal temperatures and/or precipitation because there is not a strong enough climate signal in these areas to shift the odds.

Northwest Alaska may be wetter than usual, while Hawaii has about 40% odds of being drier than usual.

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The normal amount of precipitation for December, the start of meteorological winter, is 8.2 inches, Mott said.

NOAA's winter outlook doesn't forecast snow or specific storms, but La Ninas tend to favor more storms coming from the west and north than from the Gulf of Mexico or the East Coast, he said. Jones said northern areas of the state might just be immune from La Niña, spelling good news for ski areas and skiers themselves.

Pastelok expects Arctic blasts to freeze the northern Plains this winter with temperatures sinking to subzero levels on a regular basis.

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