«Shivering season»: meteorologists predict one of the coldest and longest winters in the US

«Shivering season»: meteorologists predict one of the coldest and longest winters in the US

As this year's Old Farmer's Almanac predicts, the longest, harshest and coldest winter awaits Americans. Janice Stillman, editor of the 230-year-old winter 2021-2022 almanac, said Americans should prepare for «one of the longest, coldest winters we've ever seen.»

And while the accuracy of the almanac's forecasts is debatable, there are fears that an icy combination of above-average snowfall is expected in the US this year, and temperatures will drop below average in the New England region, parts of the Appalachian region, Ohio and the northern part of the South. The almanac predicts a colder and snowier winter in southern New Mexico as well. Most of the western drylands face an even greater drought, according to the forecasts of the almanac. Moderate temperatures will be observed in some areas of the United States, namely the Pacific coast and the northern plains. Other areas should prepare for harsh winter conditions.

«Shivering season»: meteorologists predict one of the coldest and longest winters in the US

Old Farmer's Almanac provides long range weather forecasts year after year. The publication also invites readers to learn the dates of the full moon, delicious recipes and useful tips for self-help.

However, some weather experts are skeptical and mistrustful of the almanac's forecasts. The Old Farmer's Almanac dates back to 1792, and the new version called Farmer's Almanac in 1818, long before the advent of satellite weather systems.

«Shivering season»: meteorologists predict one of the coldest and longest winters in the US

The secret formula for predicting the weather was invented by Robert Thomas in 1792, notes about which are not disclosed to this day and are kept in a «locked black box» in the offices of the almanac.

«Over the years, we have improved this formula using the latest technologies and modern scientific calculations,” the almanac’s official website mentions.

In addition to secret formulas, the almanac also uses solar science, climatology and meteorology to predict long-term weather forecasts. Even so, weather experts question the accuracy of these forecasts.

So in 2016 and 2017, meteorologist Jan Null decided to test the accuracy of Old Farmer’s Almanac forecasts by scoring them by comparing the almanac forecasts with actual weather conditions for each region of the United States.

In total, Null's rating system had three ratings — good, bad and mixed. So, for example, if the almanac predicted a dry season in a certain region of the United States, and in fact, in fact, the amount of precipitation was below average, then Null assigned the almanac forecast for the proposed region an accuracy rating of “good”. If the amount of precipitation was actually above average, then the forecast was rated «poor». And if the selected region experienced an average amount of precipitation, then the forecast was assigned a “mixed” rating.

As a result, only 25% of the 57 regions considered were awarded "good" assessing the accuracy of precipitation forecasts for 2016-2017. When evaluating the temperature forecast for 2016-2017, Null gave the almanac a «good» accuracy rating, with a result in less than 33% of the 52 regions considered.

Although the almanac claims 80% accuracy of its forecast, many forecast experts and modern meteorologists are calling into question the forecasts of such a large and long-standing project as Old Farmer's Almanac. We just have to wait for the new winter season 2021-2022 and already in fact make sure whether the forecasts of the almanac can be trusted. But still, you should think about replenishing your winter wardrobe with a couple of new warm clothes.