Another dance with La Nina

Another dance with La Nina
MOSCOW - It's snow, cold and more snow. With rain mixed in.

That's what the Inland Northwest has been seeing the past couple of weeks and forecasts predict more of the same.

UI meteorologist Dr. John Abatzoglou said in January the Inland Northwest saw minimal snowfall, close to what we saw last year, and had many thinking winter was almost over. Then winter struck back.

"We're looking at record snowfall amounts across Eastern Washington and Northern Idaho, asking ourselves 'when will winter end?' So it's a little bit ironic that we see such a dramatic shift in the weather from week to week, but it is part of the climate system as a whole," said Abatzoglou.

Abatzoglou said that cold arctic air is hitting a jet stream and driving it right into our area, bringing with it storm after storm.

"While I would be hesitant to attribute the current snow regime to La Nina, what I will say is that the cooler, wetter than normal conditions are consistent with a La Nina type pattern," said Abatzoglou.

And unfortunately for those who are dreaming of shorts and t-shirt weather, Abatzoglou said in the big picture it appears winter will be sticking around a little while longer.

"In spite of the proclamation that was made earlier last month by a rodent that called for an early spring, the current regime that we're in is likely going to stick around for another week or two," said Abatzoglou. "And with the La Nina firmly in place, it is doubtful that we're going to see an early spring."