Where’s the snow?
We’re into the heart of November now, but steady winter weather remains elusive for much of the nation. A recent analysis by NOAA’s Office of Winter Prediction shows the continental U.S. with just 3.1% snow cover as of Nov. 15.
That is the second-lowest observed value for Nov. 15 in the 20 years since these observations have been kept. The only time the map has been more bare on that date was in 2016, when only 0.2% of the Lower 48 was covered in snow. The winter of 2016-17 ended up being one of the five warmest winters on record for much of the eastern U.S.
With a strong El Niño pattern already in place and set to stay through the winter, the seasonal forecasts indicate that the northern tier of the U.S. should expect below-average snowfall this winter, while the Sierra Nevada and southern Rockies would likely have a more bountiful snow season.