Almanacs say expect heavy snow Northeast this year

| Monday, August 30, 2004

East Coast truckers, get out those chains. America’s two premiere Almanacs are calling for a nasty winter in the Northeast.

The Farmers’ Almanac, which has been predicting the weather for 188 years, is calling for at least two blizzards in the Northeast portion of the country this year.

The Lewiston, ME-based almanac has just published its newest edition. In it, the book calls for a holiday season snowstorm – “an old-fashioned White Christmas” – and another in mid-February. The Midwest could also be hit with a February snowstorm as well.

In between, the Northeast will see a January "wintermission," with unusually mild weather.

The Southeast, according to the 2005 Farmers’ Almanac, will see a very wet winter with above-average precipitation, but overall milder-than-normal temperatures. Southern California, the Colorado Plateau and the central and southern Rockies should have a mild and dry winter pattern, the book’s publishers said in a release.

The Old Farmer’s Almanac, published by Yankee Publishing of Dublin, NH, made similar predictions for the coming year in its new edition, calling for harsher-than-normal winter conditions.

The New Hampshire-based almanac sees heavier-than-normal snowfall for a wide area from the Great Lakes through New England and from eastern New Mexico to the mid-Atlantic. In addition, harsh, colder-than-normal temperatures are expected in the normally temperate Southeast, including Florida and the Deep South, as well as in the Ohio Valley, the Heartland, Texas and Oklahoma.

And that’s not all. Three of the country’s four corners – the Pacific Northwest, south Florida, and the northern New England states – can expect above-average rainfall next spring, while the Southwest, Upper Midwest, northern High Plains and other nearby areas will spend the summer cooking in high temperatures, The Old Farmer’s Almanac says.

Both publications claim that their weather forecasts are 80 percent accurate.

The Farmers’ Almanac, founded in 1818, uses a closely guarded forecasting formula that has been used for generations, including the use of the position of the planets, sunspots and tidal action of the moon.

The Old Farmer’s Almanac, which is 213 years old, was founded in 1792 and features the same cover art use since 1851. It bases its forecasts “largely on cycles of the Sun and the Moon, with other variables mixed in.”

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