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      Landon's early look at what winter may bring

      I think that this winter will likely provide a weather pattern reminiscent of last winter. (Yikes!) While it TMs virtually impossible to pin-down what any specific week will look like this winter, I may be able to give you some overall insight as to how this winter could play out. All in all, if you TMre an avid snow lover, I think you TMll enjoy what this winter may have to offer.

      A strengthening La Nia weather pattern will present itself just as it did last year. This generally means that the water in the Eastern Pacific Ocean will be cooler-than-average throughout the coming winter, and this pattern often changes up the winter weather scene for the United States. This occurs, on average, about once every three to five years. This includes that a winter that immediately follows a La Nia winter has almost a fifty percent chance of a recurrence, and this year, we have won this La Nia lottery.

      The La Nia weather pattern often leads to several key elements that may not be as common in a typical, non-La-Nia winter. For us this winter, we may have a higher-than-normal amount of Arctic air intrusions diving south from Alberta. While the winter overall may not end up being in the extreme cold category, I do think that sufficient cold air and the prevailing weather design will lead to ice and snow threats being higher and perhaps even much higher than usual. While many recent winters (not including last winter) have provided plenty of rain events " this year may trend more toward ice and snow. My gut tells me that we TMll really be watching the storms that come out of the Rockies and gain strength as they plow through the Midwest! It TMll be interesting to see if there is a consistent pattern of favorable flow from the Gulf of Mexico to help fuel these storms.

      Nationally, I don TMt feel like the Midwest will take winter TMs worst wrath " even though it TMs quite possible that the Tri-State area is in for more snow, ice, and cold than normal. The highest risk for the most dangerous weather this winter may be for freezing rain and sleet in Oklahoma and southern Missouri and for snow and ice in New England. On the dry side of the equation, fronts may encounter difficulty in making it all the way to the extreme Southern Plains. So, areas like Texas may undergo a continuing drought scenario.

      It should be a fascinating winter. What do you think? Post your comments below or on our Facebook page here.