La Niña? …Whatever Happened to El Niño?


Chloe looks out at the clouds covering the mountains.

Weather reports were indicating that this winter was going to be largest El Niño on record, but here we are in April and it's already being forecasted that our 2016 El Niño weather pattern is coming to an end. So what exactly is El Niño, which is Spanish by the way, and why should Chloe and me care? 

By definition, El Niño involves the Pacific Ocean, which includes the southern California coast and down into South America, that has to do with the water temperatures there becoming warmer than usual. The end result is generally an increase in rain or snowfall depending upon how the moisture moves through a specific region. Here in the high desert of New Mexico we were expecting heavier than normal snow throughout the winter, which for us dog walkers means bundling up with an increased layering of clothes, waterproof shoes, and hiking on snow covered trails. 

All of this sounded great, especially if I could do a few more photo shoots with Chloe in the snow. Well we did have a snow fall which I wrote about in “Companions”, but an increase of desert moisture never really happened. Now the term “La Niña” is being batted around by the weather experts which is defined as a cooling trend of the ocean temperature. 

The end result for New Mexico is for a potentially much dryer fall and winter seasons that will be coming up. But for today anyway, and depending upon how the weather finally shakes out, Chloe and me were treated to overcast skies, colder temperatures, rain and finally a few snow showers, …so maybe that El Niño really hasn’t ended!

Chloe and me spent this morning under cloudy skies, rain and finally snow!

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