Winter Forecast: Will You Need a Snow Blower?

The early forecasts for winter 2016-17 are in. From The Old Farmer’s Almanac to the Weather Channel, weather experts have weighed in on what the winter will look like for the nation. It’s a good idea to check early and get prepared for the upcoming season if you live in an area that gets major winter storms but, also if you just get doses of snow, ice and slush. Here’s the lowdown:

The Farmer’s Almanac (Not to be confused with the Old Farmer’s Almanac)–

It gets cold every winter in the North and Midwest. We know that. But The Farmer’s Almanac predicts “numbing” cold for the Midwest, “freezing” cold for the Northern Plains and “ice” cold for the Northeast. There’s average snowfall predicted for the Northern Plains and mid-November snowfall for the Northeast, Great Lakes and Midwest.

The Weather Channel

They do it with a lot more science behind the information, but it would seem that The Weather Channel mainly agrees with The Farmer’s Almanac this year. Warm El Nino is over and the flip side, cooling La Nina, is in the works. It’s not the only thing that influences the weather, but we’re still looking at cold in the Northeast, Upper Midwest and Northern Plains. The Ohio Valley, Corn Belt and Mid-Atlantic might be milder with warmer temperatures.
So, will there be snow? Yes, an average amount for many spots, but if the Ohio and Tennessee Valleys are a touch colder, their higher precipitation may mean extra snow for them. Western Montana and Idaho will probably have a good ski season.

AccuWeather shows a much less segmented map and disagrees with the Weather Channel in that the Tennessee and Ohio Valleys will generally be dry. But we’re still looking at “bitter” and “persistent” cold in the Northeast, Upper Midwest and Northern Plains. There’s also the addition of heavy snowfall in the Great Lakes regions.

The Old Farmer’s Almanac

Unlike the rest of the experts, The Old Farmer’s Almanac predicts a mild winter with below-average snow everywhere. They say Southern California and Florida may be cooler, but predictably, no mention of any snowfall. It’s a disappointment for me, but there may be many of you who don’t relish snow removal as much as I do.

My conclusion? Better safe than sorry—three out of four point to average to high snowfall for the usual suspects. And early snow in the Great Lakes areas. So, tune up that snow blower now, check out our snow blower buying guide, and make a trip to your nearest dealer to get ahead of Mother Nature.

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