Gary Lezak's 2017 Winter Forecast

Above-average snowfall predicted for Kansas City
Posted at 4:04 PM, Nov 27, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-27 20:12:35-05

KANSAS CITY -- 30 years ago, I noticed that the weather pattern was cycling, and over these past three decades we’ve found that it was not just cycling, but regularly cycling.

This year’s pattern has just set up, and according to the LRC, this cycling pattern will continue through the rest of fall, winter, spring and deep into summer.  

The early results are in and we now have enough information to make some bold predictions.  

There are a few other factors we are monitoring closely.

There is some strong cooling of the tropical Pacific waters near the equator. This cooling is called La Niña. It appears it will be a moderate La Niña this year.  

Another factor we are monitoring is the Arctic Oscillation (AO), and the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO). These indexes are likely going to be neutral to negative. When the AO and NAO go deeper into negative territory the chance of a colder winter is increased.  

Combining these two factors and adding what we have seen from the LRC thus far allows us to increase the chance of having above-average snowfall in Kansas City this winter season.

Winter begins December 21st, a Thursday, and we are forecasting it to be quite a cold month.  

In the Kansas City region, a major cold outbreak will be arriving within two to three weeks, and there may be an arctic outbreak in December. This will likely come with a few chances of snow.

Then, in January, we are expecting a mild stretch with near-average temperatures.

By February there will be more arctic blasts and colder-than-average temperatures return with a few snowstorms likely.  

Kansas City averages close to 19” of snow per winter, but over the past three winters, we’ve had a total of 24.9” of snow, making the yearly average just 8”. The past two winters had total of 4.9” and 5.9”.

That’s all combined with the fact that we have not had even 3” of snow in one storm since the 2013-2014 winter season, or four winters ago.  

My snowfall forecast is for 21.5” to fall this winter season with colder-than-average temperatures.  That’s more than four times as much snow as last winter.  

Get ready for a winter ride that will have major ups and downs, big temperature swings, and six to nine storm systems that will produce accumulations of snow.  

For an even more in-depth look at the winter forecast, check out the 41 Action News weather blog. Our weather team will be monitoring winter closely every step of the way.

Stay with 41 Action News, and we will keep you advised.