the past five Iowa winters have been snowier than normal, and colder than usual in four of them.
The next one?
State climatologist Harry Hillaker said it's an even bet for more snow than usual and a slight chance of lower temperatures than normal.
The Pacific Ocean's La Nina conditions -when equatorial waters are lower than normal - are expected to be relatively strong this winter.
Hillaker said the last 20 times that such La Nina conditions occurred, Iowa had more snow than usual on 12 occasions, and 11 of those winters were colder than normal.
But conditions vary from one side of Iowa to the other. He said snow was heavy in northeast Iowa last winter.