Temperatures have started to cool and coats and sweatshirts have been pulled out of the closets.

Tony Lupo, a University of Missouri professor of atmospheric science, said those coats could get a lot of use this winter, as it could be a tad cooler than the average.cold-snow-nature-winter

“I’m thinking it’s going to be a little colder than normal,” Lupo said. “This is due to the neutral-to-weak La Nina conditions that are in the Pacific. Generally, when that happens, we get that jet stream that is coming down from Alaska and cutting through the central United States then back up the east coast. It usually leads to cooler conditions in our part of the world.

“I look for that forecast to continue through the winter.”

The average winter temperature hovers around 32 degrees in Missouri. Lupo said that average temperatures should hang around 30 degrees this winter.

“Right now, we’re watching Alaska and Siberia,” Lupo said. “Siberia is pretty snow covered right now. We’re getting cold air masses built up there, which is very normal. There is a lot of cold air on the Russian side of the globe.

“We watch that to see if it has any tendency to nose into Alaska. When it does, and you get these La Nina situations, the jet stream can punch up into the northern regions and push that cold air into the United States.

“That’s what we’re watching right now. The Siberian cold seems to be deeper and larger than normal.”

Lupo added that precipitation should stay around normal, with 15 to 20 inches falling.

“Typically, in Missouri, you get four inches of snow and it goes away,” Lupo said. “Then you get two inches of snow and it goes away. This year, with cooler temperatures, that snow may stick around a little bit longer.”

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