10/29/2019 5:00:00 AM
Though many parts of the country have experienced a rather mild fall, it’s inevitable that winter is coming. Recently, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released predictions for the upcoming season; they anticipate “wetter-than-average” conditions for the Northern Plains, Upper Mississippi Valley, the Great Lakes and parts of the Northeast region.
The teal/green color on the map below indicates a higher percent chance for a wetter than normal winter season.
The Old Farmer’s Almanac had similar predictions for this winter, forecasting a “wet and wild” winter season in the Northeast region of the United States marked by “shivers, snowflakes, and strong storms”.
When will it snow near me?
With multiple long-range forecasts calling for a stormy winter, you may be wondering, when will you see the first snowfall in your area? The National Weather Service released a map indicating the likely first snowfall for locations across the country. The colored dots on the map below show the date by which there's a 50% chance that at least 0.1 inch of snow will fall, based on each location's snowfall history from 1981-2010.
Although the date of the first snowfall varies from region to region, historic records predict that it will snow first at high altitudes such as the Rocky Mountains before hitting the Midwest and Northeast. Use the map above to determine when you can generally expect the first snowfall near you.
What causes snow?
According to an article posted by DailyMail, "Weather.com explains that there are three basic ingredients needed for snow. The air needs to be moist, it needs to be below freezing, and the air needs to rise in order to turn moisture into snowflakes. Being close to large bodies of water can help generate snow showers. But the places that get the most snow are usually those that consistently get cold, rising air, such as in the northern latitudes.The NWS map shows how these three ingredients are combining on a regional level."
How do I prepare for the winter season?
One of the first steps in preparing for the winter season is making sure your snow blower is ready for winter. Don’t wait until the first snowfall to start your snow blower, instead, take it out of the garage today and start the engine. It may sound silly to start your snow blower on a fall day without snow, but you cannot know the status of your snow blower until you start its engine. For a more detailed list on getting your snow blower ready for winter, read our blog post linked here.