Effects of La Nia on Tahoe/Truckee uncertain for upcoming winter | SierraSun.com

Effects of La Nia on Tahoe/Truckee uncertain for upcoming winter

Annie FlanzraichTahoe Daily Tribune

LAKE TAHOE andamp;#8212; While other parts of the United States may be in for some extreme temperatures this winter due to La Nia weather patterns, the effects on Tahoe are uncertain.La Nia is associated with cooler-than-normal water temperatures in the Equatorial Pacific Ocean and can bring extreme temperatures and precipitation.While the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reports the Northwest may experience a wetter and colder winter than normal, and the Southwest and South may experience a drier and warmer winter than normal, Lake Tahoe falls into the andamp;#8220;equal chancesandamp;#8221; category.Lake Tahoe has a 33 percent chance of receiving more perception that normal, a 33 percent chance of average precipitation and a 33 percent chance of having less than average perception. As for temperature, the region has a 33 percent chance of warmer than usual weather, a 33 percent chance of average temperature and 33 percent chance of colder temperatures.In other words, Tahoeandamp;#8217;s in no manandamp;#8217;s land when it comes to long-term forecasting, said Jan Null, a certified consulting meteorologist with Golden Gate Weather Services.andamp;#8220;Itandamp;#8217;s a non-forecast,andamp;#8221; Null said.Last year the country experienced an El Nio, which is associated with warmer than normal water temperatures.Both La Nia and El Nio, which typically occur every 2-5 years, influence weather patterns throughout the world and often lead to extreme weather events.Last winterandamp;#8217;s El Nio contributed to record-breaking rain and snowfall, leading to severe flooding in some parts of the country, with record heat and drought in other parts of the country. Although La Nia is the opposite of El Nio, it also has the potential to bring weather extremes to parts of the nation.andamp;#8220;La Nia is in place and will strengthen and persist through the winter months, giving us a better understanding of what to expect between December and February,andamp;#8221; said Mike Halpert, deputy director of the Climate Prediction Center andamp;#8212; a division of the National Weather Service. andamp;#8220;This is a good time for people to review the outlook and begin preparing for what winter may have in store.andamp;#8221;But the forecast doesnandamp;#8217;t guarantee epic powder.andamp;#8220;If I was a resort owner, I wouldnandamp;#8217;t say Iandamp;#8217;m going to take out three lifts or put in three lifts based on these reports,andamp;#8221; Null said.NOAA also reports other climate factors will play a role in the winter weather at times across the country. The seasonal outlook does not project where and when snowstorms may hit or total seasonal snowfall accumulations. Snow forecasts are dependent upon winter storms, which are generally not predictable more than several days in advance.andamp;#8220;Some of these factors, such as the North Atlantic Oscillation, are difficult to predict more than one to two weeks in advance,andamp;#8221; Halpert said. andamp;#8220;The NAO adds uncertainty to the forecast in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic portions of the country.andamp;#8221;