Well, it looks like La Niña, sibling to El Niño, is in place for the coming winter season.
La Niña, a band of cooler-than-normal water temperatures in the Pacific Ocean, is likely to bring some extreme winter weather to parts of the United States, according to the annual winter outlook from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
I'm not sure if she had anything to do with the tremendous weather we've had here all year, but if so, she's more than welcome to stay as long as she'd like.
So according to this NYT piece, how does this bode for the kind of winter we can expect here in the Northeast? Should I expect long and lonely days in February and March here in the shop, with nothing much more to do than write dialog and stare out the window at the squalling snows? Here's what the wise weatherfolks have for us:
• Northeast and Mid-Atlantic: equal chances for above-, near-, or below-normal temperatures and precipitation. Winter weather for these regions is often driven not by La Niña but by weather patterns over the northern Atlantic Ocean and Arctic. These are often more short-term and are generally predictable only a week or so in advance. If enough cold air and moisture are in place, areas north of the Ohio Valley and into the Northeast could see above-average snow;
So there you have it. We can expect either above, near, or below normal temperatures and precipitation. How's that for covering your bet. We will get a week's notice of changes which should help.
I think I'll just stick to the gutsier weather prognosticators like fat birds and badgers, lots of acorns and berries, lingering leaves on the trees, pigs gathering sticks, and slow, fat, and fuzzy wollybear caterpillars.
It's New England after all, we have to be prepared for anything. Just today we've had freezing temps, warm sunshine, gusting winds, hail, and cold rain. And it's still early afternoon.
Oh good, the sun's back out.