Seasonal Precipitation and Temperature Outlook

Written by Scott Borgioli, WeatherAg Chief Meteorologist

March 20, 2024 (next update approximately April 3)

 LA NINA / EL NINO

El Nino is weakening, and “neutral” conditions (neither a La Nina nor El Nino exists) are expected to kick in during May or early June. By September, a La Nina is then expected to quickly develop, and continue through sometime between January and March 2025. Just about all data suggests that La Nina will peak at a high-end weak or low-end moderate strength. Since 1950, there have been 25 La Nina episodes. Of these, 12 have been “weak,” 6 have been “moderate,” and, 7 have been “strong.” During a “weak” La Nina, California has recorded below-normal precipitation 58% of the time. A “moderate” La Nina yields below-normal precipitation 67% of the time. A “strong” La Nina has similar trends of below-normal precipitation. Temperatures are typically near to slightly below average during a weak/moderate La Nina.

 APRIL TEMPERATURE/PRECIPITATION

Temperature: Probabilistic odds and data favor near normal. Through around April 10, mean temperatures look to be -5 to 0 of normal. April 11-30, mean temperatures are then predicted to be +3 to -2 of the normal mean (however, very weak signals exist for a slightly below-normal mean).

Precipitation: odds favor slightly above average. However, this is conditional on high pressure in the Pacific not being in a blocking position for an extended period or not being overly strong/ remaining in one spot for too long and, therefore, causing a stagnant pattern.

MAY TEMPERATURE/PRECIPITATION

Temperature: probabilistic odds and data favor near normal to slightly above normal (especially after May 10). Mean temperatures (as a whole, for May) are favored at -3 to +5 of normal.

Precipitation: signals highly favor near average with no strong swing either way (+/-).

JUNE TEMPERATURE/PRECIPITATION

Temperature: Probabilistic odds/data favor above-normal temperatures (0 to +5 of mean).

Precipitation: Signals highly favor near average.

JULY/AUGUST/SEPTEMBER TEMPERATURE/PRECIPITATION

Temperature: odds strongly favor above-normal mean temperatures for this entire period.

Precipitation: signals highly favor near average for July/August, slightly below for September.

*This outlook is preliminary and is a generalized prediction based on the currently observed and predicted weather patterns, model data, long-term predictions, and historical trends. This outlook should not be used as a specific forecast, but rather as a tool of future probabilities based on current data signals and expert opinion.

 

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