North Carolina winter weather outlook: Dry

RALEIGH, N.C.

A precipitation map put out with NOAA's annual Winter Outlook shows a line through central North Carolina that predicts 33 percent less rain or snow than usual.

Forecasters said sea surface temperatures across the Pacific Ocean have been near average since spring 2012 and that should continue through the winter - meaning neither El Niño nor La Niña is expected to influence the climate during the upcoming winter.

"It's a challenge to produce a long-term winter forecast without the climate pattern of an El Niño or a La Niña in place out in the Pacific because those climate patterns often strongly influence winter temperature and precipitation here in the United States," said Mike Halpert, acting director of NOAA's Climate Prediction Center.

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