NOAA Releases 2020/2021 Winter Weather Outlook

Posted Thursday, October 15,2020

I’m not a big fan of seasonal outlooks. But, if you’re going to read one you are better off reading seasonal outlooks from NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration). While NOAA outlooks can be kind of boring, they at least don’t try to hype things up like some of the commercial weather providers have a tendency to do.

Before we get to the Winter Outlook, though, it’s important to understand how climate outlooks differ from an actual weather forecast.

  • A ‘forecast’ details predictable weather events in the short-term. It includes specifics like how much rain will fall and what the high and low temperatures will be.
  • An ‘Outlook’ does not provide specific details. It can only state in general terms what weather conditions may be like over a large chunk of time (month, season, etc.). Outlooks are vague on purpose and are only intended to give general guidance in the long term.

TEMPERATURE OUTLOOK
NOAA thinks that we will see a warmer than average winter in eastern Ohio.

That doesn’t mean we won’t see cold temperatures at times. It just means that conditions as NOAA see them will favor a warmer than average winter as a whole.

PRECIPITATION
It’s important to note that precipitation includes both rain AND snow. More than average does not necessarily mean snowier than normal. It just means wetter than normal.

You can read the full NOAA Winter Outlook HERE.

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