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Weather Wiz Kids

Winter '13 - '14

2013 in Review

2013 was the seventh warmest year on record and saw one of the strongest cyclones, strongest tornadoes and the most topsy-turvy weather experienced in decades.

Spring 2013 was one for the record books. Two EF5 tornadoes ripped through the Oklahoma City area in May. A monster EF5 tornado packing winds between 200-210 mph roared through Moore, OK on May 20th, pulverizing block after block of homes and demolishing the walls of an elementary school. The tornado struck at mid-afternoon and tore a 17-mile path that was 1.3 miles wide. It was on the ground for approximately 40 minutes. Much of the storms rampage was captured on live television, perhaps alerting people in its path to seek shelter. Another round of severe weather torn through El Reno, OK on May 31st. Storms swept through the area generating an EF5 tornado and violent flash floods. The tornado was the widest one ever recorded -- 2.6 miles long.

In late June 2013, an intense heat wave struck the Southwestern United States. Various places in Southern California reached up to 122 °F. On June 30, Death Valley, California hit 129.2 °F, which is the hottest temperature ever recorded on Earth during the month of June.

After days of heavy rain, massive flooding in Colorado stranded hundreds of residents. Colorado's heavily populated Front Range received more than 15 inches of rain in September. That's about half the amount of precipitation that normally falls in the foothills near Boulder during an entire year.

It came as a surprise that the 2013 Atlantic Ocean hurricane season was one of the weakest recorded in 50 years. There were no major hurricanes in the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico or the Atlantic basin and only Ingrid and Humberto out of the 13 named storms reached hurricane strength. It was a very different story in the western-north Pacific however, where 30 major storms had been recorded by early November. Thirteen of them were typhoon-strength, the biggest by some way being typhoon Haiyan, possibly the most powerful tropical cyclone to make landfall in recorded history. Haiyan smashed into the southern Philippines, killing 6,000 people and wreaking massive damage.

Winter Precip Outlook

The Climate Prediction Center is forecasting below normal precipitation across parts of the Southwest and Southeast.

Winter Precip Outlook

Winter Temp Outlook


The Climate Prediction Center is forecasting above normal temperatures across the Southwest and South. They are also forecasting below normal temperatures across the northern Plains and Pacific Northwest.

Winter Precip Outlook

'13-'14 NOAA Winter Outlook


Winter is likely to offer little relief to the drought-stricken Southwest, and drought is likely to develop across parts of the Southeast as below-average precipitation is favored in these areas of the country. Sea surface temperatures across the equatorial Pacific have been near average since spring 2012, and forecasters expect that to continue through the winter. This means that neither El Niño nor La Niña is expected to influence the climate during the upcoming winter.

The Precipitation Outlook favors below-average precipitation in the Southwest, Southeast and the Alaskan panhandle. Expect above-average precipitation in the Northern Rockies, particularly over Montana and northern Wyoming and in Hawaii.

The Temperature Outlook favors below-average temperatures in the Northern Plains and the Alaskan Panhandle. Expect above-average temperatures in the Southwest, the South-Central U.S., parts of the Southeast, New England and western Alaska.

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Product Information:
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