What's the weather going to be like this winter? Well if you're hoping for mild and warm, you may be disappointed in the weather outlook from Al Dutcher, State Climatologist with UNL. Farmers, businessmen and others interested in what we'll see this winter came to Dutcher's presentation at the Columbus Chamber of Commerce on Thursday.
Al started out his presentation by reviewing how the weather has been so far this fall and winter, and compared it to last year. This year’s La Nina event is much stronger than last year and expected to last longer.
Many people have commented on the recent stretch of dry weather we've been seeing in our region of Nebraska as of late, but Dutcher explained we received almost all of our fall precipitation during the month of October.
Al said the La Nina pattern will keep dry conditions south of Nebraska, which will continue to expand the drought in those areas.
Dutcher says when looking at the La Nina event that we are currently experiencing, we could expect to see 4-8 inches of snow than normal for our area. Speaking of snow - Al says the current projection shows a chance of snow from Christmas to New Year's across the Great Plains. Columbus has a 35% chance of seeing a white Christmas on average each year. I'm keeping my fingers crossed - because I personally LOVE snow!
When it comes to his official forecast Dutcher expects our winter to be colder than normal with above normal snowfall for eastern Nebraska. When could we see most of that snow? Al expects February to be the most likely month to see heavy snow and expects at least one big snowstorm.
So bundle up and keep a shovel handy!