Sierra Central Snow Lab Split on Winter Expectations


Scientists at the Sierra Central Snow Lab report a 50/50 likelihood of the region experiencing another historically significant snowfall year during the anticipated strong El Niño. After scrutinizing data from the past 10 seasons, the snow lab observes, “There’s a fairly even split in the highest snowfall years,” with 5 out of the top 10 occurring during El Niño events, 4 during La Niñas, and one under neutral conditions. This trend similarly applies to the top ten lowest snowfall years, with 4 of them coinciding with El Niño years.

In summary, the lab suggests that El Niño and La Niña years may not reliably predict the type of winter the region will encounter. They emphasize that numerous external factors also come into play. Additionally, the National Weather Service Climate Prediction Center forecasts a warmer-than-average winter and equal chances of precipitation being either below or above average.


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