NOAA: Warmer Than Average Winter Predicted for US

October 17, 2019 Updated: October 17, 2019

The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said that “warmer than average” temperatures are going to affect most of the United States during the upcoming 2019-2020 winter.

“Although below-average temperatures are not favored, cold weather is anticipated and some areas could still experience a colder-than-average winter,” the agency said in an update on Thursday. “Wetter-than-average weather is most likely across the Northern Tier of the U.S. during winter, which extends from December through February.”

It said that the greatest chance of warmer weather is in Alaska and Hawaii.

This 2019-20 Winter Outlook map for precipitation shows wetter-than-average weather is most likely across the Northern Tier of the United States this coming winter. (NOAA)

But the “Northern Plains, Upper Mississippi Valley, and the western Great Lakes have equal chances for below-, near- or above-average temperatures,” the forecaster said.

No portion of the United States is predicted to have below-average temperatures.

“Drier-than-average conditions are most likely for Louisiana, parts of Texas, Mississippi, Arkansas, and Oklahoma as well areas of northern and central California,” the report said. “The remainder of the U.S. falls into the category of equal chances for below-, near-, or above-average precipitation.”

People walk up a closed off road as snow continued to fall
People walk up a closed off road as snow continued to fall in Olympia, Wash., on Monday, Feb. 11, 2019. (AP Photo/Rachel La Corte)

Across the southern portion of the country, abnormally dry conditions will be present. The most severe drought will affect the Four Corners region, the NOAA said.

Drought conditions are expected to improve, however, in the Southeast, Mid-Atlantic, Alaska, and Hawaii, officials added.


The Old Farmer’s Almanac is forecasting that portions of the United States will see a “snow-verload” during what has been described as a snowy winter.

For instance, it is predicting a “wet and wild” 2019-20 winter in the northeastern United States.

But overall, it is calling for “shivers, snowflakes … and strong storms” with the “snow-verload” impacting northern states in the Midwest and West.

“In the U.S., this winter will be remembered for strong storms bringing a steady roofbeat of heavy rain and sleet, not to mention piles of snow. The 2020 Old Farmer’s Almanac is calling for frequent snow events—from flurries to no fewer than seven big snowstorms from coast to coast, including two in April for the Intermountain region west of the Rockies,” it wrote on its website.

Warmer Fall

The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has predicted that the United States, overall, will have warmer than average temperatures for fall, which lasts from now until late December.

Winter Weather Chicago
Pedestrians cross an icy Chicago River on Madison St. near the Civic Opera House in Chicago, Jan. 28, 2019. (Rich Hein/Chicago Sun-Times via AP)

No areas of the United States, including Alaska, are forecast to have below-average temperatures over the three-year span, the agency said.

The NOAA said that the regions with the greatest chance of seeing above-average temperatures are northern Alaska, the Southwest, and much of New England.

“The desert southwest has the highest odds of a warmer than average fall,” according to The Weather Channel, adding that it is the “dark red contour in the map above, which covers parts of southeastern Utah, southwestern Colorado, much of Arizona and much of New Mexico.”

Meanwhile, the region “from New England to upstate New York also have at least 50 percent odds of above-average temperatures during the next three months.”