LOGAN – The Utah Climate Center at Utah State University has released its winter outlook for the state.

Climate Center researcher Dr. Jon Meyer said most of the state has equal chances for a normal winter outlook. But he said there are other indicators.

“And those indicators are giving us some evidence that the northern half of the state is going to see normal to slightly above normal winter precipitation,” Dr. Meyer said. “So, we’re really hopeful that by April 1st, when we’re measuring all the water we expect to come down the streams, that most of the state has seen a pretty good winter.”

He said Utah’s outlook coming out of winter is good, more so for the northern half of the state, than for southern Utah.

“It’s certainly more positive than it was last year, having that extra soil moisture in place going into the season and some positive outlooks for the northern half of the state looking at good chances for normal to slightly above normal precipitation,” Dr. Meyer added. “Unfortunately, the southern half is looking at drier than normal conditions, so a little bit of a split personality and that will continue to stress the drought conditions going into next summer.”

Dr. Meyer said the leading predictor for most western states’ snowpack outlooks is what phase of the El Nino or La Nina cycle is present in the Pacific Ocean. But he said that information doesn’t affect most of Utah.

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