By John Lauritsen

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Our #Top10WxDay had plenty of sun and temperatures about 15 degrees above normal for this time of year — and the National Weather Service says you should enjoy it while it lasts.

They’re predicting that this winter will be colder and wetter than average in Minnesota. They say our state stands up to a 50 percent chance for colder than average temperatures for January, February and March.

“Certainly we have the potential to get a few more cold air outbreaks this winter,” meteorologist Mike Griesinger of the National Weather Service said.

In order to predict January temperatures in Minnesota, the NWS has to look at water temperatures 7,000 miles away in the Pacific Ocean. Right now, those water temperatures are cooler than normal.

Griesinger said a La Niña winter usually means more snow and colder temps. Of course, we had a La Niña last year and somehow February was one of our warmest on record.

“That was an odd one,” Griesinger said. “We had one day where MSP even got down to 20 below before Christmas, and we thought we were doing well. Then we had an inch of rain on Christmas and never looked back, at that point.”

Griesinger said Minnesota saw plenty of precipitation, but the warm pattern never broke. He said the odds of that happening again this winter are about as good as getting an ice storm in August.

“To get that in back-to-back years is hard to do,” he said.


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