Our above average summer and warmer than normal fall are now beginning to trickle into our not so cold winter. Although the official calendar date for the start of winter is still a few weeks away, most of the U.S. has already had its first taste of cold temperatures, rain or snow.
Here in Arizona, all we keep seeing is record or near-record heat. Even this week we are talking about record-setting heat on Thanksgiving. Our out-of-towners I’m sure are not bothered by this at all, while the rest of us are wishing for a cool down.
Especially our local ski resorts. Snowbowl in Flagstaff went bold and declared a Nov. 10 opening date, then pushed it to Nov. 17, and is now hoping that it can at least be opening by Thanksgiving weekend.
Sunrise in Greer, well its website just says “We are gearing up for the ski season” -- with no planned date as to when it will open.
Both resorts can begin their season by making snow but with overnight temperatures above freeze and warm, and sunny afternoons that snow has been melting.
So what are climatologists and meteorologists saying about the winter 2107-18 season?
NOAA recently put out their outlook. They predict a warmer winter from California to the Midwest and a colder than normal winter for places like the Pacific Northwest and northern tier states. When it comes to a La Nina developing, they are predicting about a 60 percent chance. But if it does, it will be weak and possibly short-lived.
As far as temperatures and precipitation, for Arizona it appears a drier and warmer than normal winter is expected. When you look at the maps NOAA put out, we sit in the categories for both. So just like this summer with our “Non—Soon” it could be a lackluster winter rain/snow season too. But this is just a broad brush look at the upcoming forecast. You never know what Mother Nature might do.
The Farmer’s Almanac has a bit of a different take on the winter outlook. Click this link to read what they have to say.
For now in Arizona, enjoy the sunshine and keep the skies nearby, you‘ll get to break them out in the next month!
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