Paul Pastelok and his Accuweather.com associates have released their summer forecast, which I find somewhat questionable at best.
He seems to forecast the same exact areas to have the exact same weather nearly every summer, and it almost seems as though his entire team is ignoring all of the signs that have surfaced during this mid-late spring season, that last year were not present, such as cut-off lows showing up in the middle of the country, ever-increasing snowpack in the Wyoming & Colorado Rockies, and as snow season draws to a close, I see increased chances of large rain events across the same areas that have gotten heavy snows recently, not to mention flooding in the Plains and Midwest, and many bouts of cool to cold air masses sliding in over the same areas over and over again.
What else have we seen this spring? hmm…how about strong high pressures that have been repeatedly developing in both California and in the Northeast, and tend to remain stationary for one to two weeks at a time, notice that is has been frequently warm to very warm and I might even say unusually warm in both locations at times, whereas the opposite has been true over the Rockies, Central states and Southeast, as unusual cold and persistent snows, rains and occasional severe weather events have pounded the region, and even now, continue to dominate the aforementioned regions, I can say now, with confidence, that what seems to be the overall pattern emerging, and what seems to be the most accurate 2013 summer outlook, the award goes to FA (Farmers’ Almanac) who is forecasting warmer to hotter and drier than usual conditions in the Northeast (Pennsylvania northward) and West coast (entire west coast) regions, while the rest of the nation will see normal precipitation with normal temperatures to the west (Rockies, high Plains) and warm to hot conditions for the eastern Plains and eastward, though I feel as though the normal temps could extend and reach farther east to include the eastern Plains and upper Midwest.
Bottom line, this summer will not likely be the scorcher that last year was, with the exception of the West coast and Northeast regions, this does not mean that there will not be any heat waves in the rest of the nation, to assume that would be foolish, but heat waves for most of us should be short-lived and not as intense, with temps averaging near normal.
I can definitely see improving drought conditions from Colorado and Wyoming to the entire rest of the drought areas in the plains, though it will take at least a few years of at least normal precipitation to completely erase the damage done by oppressive heat and drought, I do believe significant improvement is likely in the aforementioned regions, California, however is not looking good, as serious lack of precipitation over the winter and spring may lead to a very bad wildfire season, as well as serious water restrictions and burn bans this summer.
It is also possible that a temporary drought could develop in the Northeast, though that bears further scrutiny, and even if a drought does develop there, it would likely help more than hurt them, since the weather has been relentless over that area for several years, a season or two of drought conditions might be appreciated in the Northeast.