Photo Courtesy of: NOAA
In the past few months climatologists, meteorologists, old wives tales, the farmers almanac, small mammals-just about anyone and everything you could possible think of has made some prediction about the upcoming 2011-2012 North American Winter. Whether they’re all right or wrong we won’t know till next May, but truthfully, they’re pretty fun to read and speculate on.
Joel Gratz is a skier and meteorologist for ColoradoPowderForecast.com. From their perspective….ready for it… La Niña will be back this winter, no doubt about it, and this winter, will be large and deep. It’s nice to hear numerous reports of La Niña making her way to our neck of the woods because relying on one forecast, in the middle of August just doesn’t seem as good as 10 forecasts all pretty much saying we’re in for it this winter.
We’ve learned thanks to Dr. Kaye and others that simply put, La Niña takes place when below average ocean temperatures near and in the ocean help create colder air temperatures in the North Hemisphere. This interplay coupled with the dominant weather patterns associated with it means North America usually gets more precipitation (and more snow!!!).
Joel thinks this winter may be as big if not bigger than last winter. He recently shared,“This season should be similar to last season, but no two winters are alike.” “Snowfall patterns will definitely shift a bit this year.” That means it could be bigger, could be smaller, but anything close to last season should be okay for most.
When asked about the possibility of a third La Niña Joel shared, “La Niña sometimes sticks around for two or even three years, but this doesn’t happen with every La Niña.” Sounds like it’s gonna snow when it snows, and let’s just hope we get a taste of anything resembling last season so all will be good (and deep)!