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Winter Weather 2018

SHORTS OR SHOVELS?

Farmers’ Almanac's Winter Outlook

2018 Farmers Almanac Winter Forecast
 
Depending on where you are in North America, you'll either be donning shorts or shovels as we embark on The Cold, The Dry, The Wet & The Wild Winter Weather
“Our winter outlook is a tradition that, for two centuries, has been celebrated with cheers and jeers, depending on what type of winter activity you enjoy. Many people are hoping they'll need their shovels, but others are content to don their shorts all year-long.”
– Editor Peter Geiger, Philom.

The Cold

Cold conditions are back! According to the Farmers’ Almanac’s 200-year-old formula, this winter is expected to be a bit more “normal” as far as the temperatures are concerned, especially in the eastern and central parts of the country–chiefly those areas to the east of the Rocky Mountains–with many locations experiencing above-normal precipitation.

The Dry

For the western third of the country—mainly those areas west of the Continental Divide—the overall winter will not be as wet as last year. Our forecasts are pointing to a return to more normal winter conditions in regard to both temperatures and precipitation. This is not to say that there won’t be occasional bouts of heavy precipitation sweeping in from the Pacific, or shots of cold air pushing south through western Canada (because what’s winter without those?), but these should be balanced out by spells of dry and mild weather.

The Wet

Break out the space heaters, umbrellas, and warm socks, because the Southeast will see below normal winter temperatures with an unseasonable chill reaching as far south as the Gulf Coast, with above-average precipitation.

From the Great Lakes into the Northeast, snowier-than-normal conditions are expected. We can hear the skiers, boarders, and snowmobilers cheering from here!

“One of the key components in our formula is the Moon and its motions. The Moon has a proven influence on the tides, and it is our belief that it may have effects on our atmosphere as well. Ocean tides can be accurately predicted, so part of our formula relies on the belief that we can line up certain weather patterns with a specific position of the Moon in its orbit … ”
– Caleb Weatherbee, Official Almanac Weather Prognosticator

Of particular note, for those readers rooting for shovels, we are red-flagging the 2018 dates of January 20-23, February 4-7 & 16-19, and March 1-3 & 20-23 along the Atlantic Seaboard for some heavy precipitation. Good news for skiers and snow enthusiasts, but for those looking to build sandcastles, not-so-good news, but a good time to book that tropical getaway.

Will you have a white Christmas? Find out! »

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The Wild?

And for parts of the western Great Lakes, eastern Great Plains, and points south, including Arklatexoma (where Arkansas, Louisiana, Texas, and Oklahoma abut), be prepared for wide swings in the weather pendulum, from very warm to very cold, and periods of tranquil conditions mixed with occasional spells of tempestuous weather.

Learn more about our weather formula in the 2018 Farmers’ Almanac »

“Being in the business of predicting long-range weather forecasts is exciting, worrisome and rewarding. Many of our readers rejoice when we predict cold and snowy conditions while others complain that it's too cold and wet. Yet we have to stick by our predictions no matter what Mother Nature may throw at us. We do believe that we provide an invaluable, long-range outlook that helps people plan ahead.”
– Managing Editor Sandi Duncan, Philom.

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