SIOUX FALLS, SD - December is here and while many have the Christmas lights strung and egg nog warming, but one ingredient is missing. Despite a mid-November snow storm across the rest of KELOLAND, Sioux Falls has been spared so far.
Wednesday, Meteorologist Scot Mundt talked about what we can expect for this December's snowfall totals.
We are heading into a la Niña winter. Typically, this pattern delivers colder and wetter forecasts for KELOLAND.
But in many locations, Sioux Falls included, it was the driest autumn on record. Finding a compromise will be a story of the 2011 winter.
A newly released government outlook downgrades the potential harshness of winter in the northern plains.
In November, the average high was around 49 degrees, six degrees above normal. And, when spanned over a month, that is a very large number.
But why the warmer weather?
Our jet stream roughly governs temperature trends. And a bow in the jet kept us warmer throughout fall.
With systems straying north or south of us, we haven't seen snowpacks lasting very long. The southeast has seen little more than a trace.
Once snow settles in and lasts, forecasts will be much colder. Snow pulls heat out of the ground, and then escapes to space.
But since this has not developed yet we've been warm.
Over the coming weeks, this will change. Snowy nights will bring lasting cold spells.