Warmer than average temperatures continue

By: 
Erin Mullins

Mild winter weather will continue for the Big Horn Basin in early January.
Wyoming will stay relatively calm and quiet the first week of January, National Weather Service meteorologist Joshua Rowe said. There is a low chance of snowfall on Thursday, Jan. 4 for southwestern Wyoming.
Temperatures will be pretty close to what they have been this winter for most of Wyoming, without much wind or precipitation, Rowe said.
Starting on the weekend, there will likely be a cool down due to the end of a high-pressure system in the atmosphere. The high-pressure system has kept temperatures mild and limited precipitation, he said. Although there will be a cool down, Rowe does not expect an “artic outbreak,” as the cool down will not be too severe.
There are not currently any major weather concerns for the Lovell area, he said. There is a slight chance of precipitation on Saturday, but the chances of precipitation are the lowest in the region, at around 20 percent.  The Big Horn Basin will be warmer than much of western Wyoming, which is typical, he said. The average high for the Lovell area will be around freezing. and the average low will be in the teens, he said.
Rowe said the weather service is constantly modeling for weather events and predicting changes in weather. The closer you are to a date, the more accurate a forecast is, with the most accurate forecasts starting three days out.
Snow amounts and the exact timing of cold fronts are most accurately forecast a few days out from the event, he said, as more specific weather information needs to be predicted closer to the date. In general, weather can be forecast accurately five to seven days out.
Weather science isn’t perfect, Rowe said, and when weather is forecasted more than a week out the different forecasting models do not agree with each other.  Beyond a week, the  many variables to account for and biases of each forecasting method make long-term forecasts not as accurate.
Although worldwide there are higher than average temperatures due to El Niño, daily warm weather in Lovell cannot be pinned down to global trends, he said. El Niño is when warmer than normal ocean temperatures influence the overall weather pattern during a particular season to be warmer than average.

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