Wild Winter Forecast

Friday, October 22, 2010 - 10:02am

NOAA warns to expect a winter of extremes.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has released its annual winter outlook
and it looks like another winter of extremes for many parts of the country.

NOAA scientists say the biggest factor on our winter weather lies in the Pacific ocean, a climatic condition called La Nina associated with colder than normal water temperatures near the equator.

That could translate into less snowfall.

It's welcome news for the snowstorm-battered northeastern corridor, but not for the rest of the North.

Temperatures and precipitation are expected to be above average across the northern part of the nation, from the northern Plains westward into the Pacific Northwest.

While residents from Minnesota to Oregon will battle the snow and rain, folks in southern states will likely need sunglasses this winter.

It's expected to be warmer and drier there.

That's not necessarily good news, because pockets of the South are already too dry.

noaa says La Nina conditions typically last between nine and twelve months, but some episodes can persist for up to two years.

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