© 2023 Wyoming Public Media
800-729-5897 | 307-766-4240
Wyoming Public Media is a service of the University of Wyoming
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
Transmission & Streaming Disruptions
A regional collaboration of public media stations that serve the Rocky Mountain States of Colorado, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming.

This Winter's Snowfall Will Not Be As Intense As Last Year's

Public Domain

Much of the Mountain West saw record breaking snowfall last year which was great news for the mountain resort industry. This year's snowfall may be less intense. 

That's because the region won't be seeing El Niño and La Niña conditions this season. Colorado State climatologist Russ Schumacher said during La Niña conditions, it's more wet and cool while in El Niño, it's warmer and dryer. This year will likely be neutral.

"When we're in neutral conditions, which is what is expected as the most likely scenario, we do tend to have […] below normal snow years compared to above normal," he said.

Schumacher said last season was extreme.

"Lots of places in mountains saw near record to record snowpack and extremes are rare by definition," he said. "Just by probability it's not that likely that we will see another year like that."

El Niño and La Niña are patterns in the temperatures of the Pacific Ocean near the Equator. At times they can reflect global temperature trends. Schumacher said when conditions are neutral like this anything could happen.

This story was produced by the Mountain West News Bureau, a collaboration between Wyoming Public Radio, Boise State Public Radio in Idaho, KUER in Salt Lake City, KUNR in Nevada, and KRCC and KUNC in Colorado.

In addition to reporting daily on the happenings in Northwest Wyoming, Kamila is also the producer of the Kids Ask WhY Podcast and the History Unloaded Podcast.Kamila has worked for public radio stations in California, New York, France and Poland. Originally from New York City, she loves exploring new places. Kamila received her master in journalism from Columbia University. In her spare time, she enjoys exploring the surrounding areas with her two pups and husband.
Related Content