CLARKSBURG, W.Va. – When preparing for the winter season, there is lots of warm and cold as well as dry and wet. This is not just the case across the Mountain State, but throughout much of the country.
What are we looking at?
A La Niña winter is expected this winter. High pressure centered in the Pacific Ocean orients the Jet Stream to take a dip from the polar regions. The high pressure also pushes in a strong moisture feed from the El Niño Southern Oscillation and normally brings cooler than average temperatures during the colder months.
This year – in addition to the ENSO, there is a cold pool of moisture closer to Alaska within the Eastern Pacific Oscillation. This will help with multiple cold snaps that are possible throughout the Winter.
However because of the set-up of the La Niña Jet Stream, we are expecting at or above-average temperatures throughout the Ohio Valley and Appalachia.
The moisture feed will also be strong for some of our region. The western half of West Virginia will likely see above-average precipitation this Winter, whereas the eastern half of the Mountain State will potentially see average precipitation over the next few months.
Overall, the 2021-2022 winter season will likely be similar to 2020-2021. Temperatures will possibly be warmer than average due to the Jet Stream placement, but the cold pool near Alaska has the potential to bring plenty of cold snaps.
This is why the StormTracker 12 weather team is thinking that north-central West Virginia will see near-average snowfall throughout the Wild and Wonderful.
The lowlands will likely see average-to-just above average snowfall and the mountains will likely see average-to-just below average snowfall.
However, don’t let this fool you; the mountains will still have the potential to see two-to-three times the amount of snow the lowlands could see depending on elevation, moisture patterns, and temperatures.
Make sure to catch the full 2021 StormTracker 12 Winter Weather Special here.