Northern California has been on a roller coaster ride the past decade when it comes to winter weather. The past 7 years have brought forward a significant drought, except for the unusually wet and snowy winters of 2017 and 2019. As we continue to battle another drought-stricken year, we can only hope that this winter brings lots of rain and snowpack to alleviate dry conditions.
Oddly enough, the Old Farmer’s Almanac has two different weather forecasts for NorCal this winter.
The oldest weather predictor in the country released its upcoming prediction for the 2022-23 season and it brings a tale of two winters in our region. According to the forecast, far NorCal – essentially anything north of Redding – will see a mild, dry winter. South of Redding, including much of the Sierra Nevada mountain range, will see a mild, snowy winter. Here is a look at their forecast for the entire United States:
Although the forecast isn’t great for far NorCal, especially Siskiyou County which has seen devastating wildfires in recent years, a snowy season in the Sierra would be crucial for water storage in the state. The Sierra Nevada provides approximately one-third of the water for the state of California.
Of course, these things are never full-proof. The predictions are based on 30-year statistical averages prepared by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and updated every ten years. Weather trends and events are predicted by comparing solar patterns and historical weather conditions with current solar activity. In 2008, the Almanac stated that the earth had entered a global cooling period that would probably last decades, which, as you know, is the exact opposite of what actually happened.
Despite a forecast that isn’t the best of news, let’s hope for a wet winter in NorCal, like the historic one we saw in 2017. One big winter would provide so much benefits to the region.