Here’s the fall 2023 weather forecast for Pennsylvania

HARRISBURG, Pennsylvania – As the hurricane season intensifies in late August and early September, so does the shift from the larger climate pattern of La Niña to El Niño. And yes, they can, and often do, have effects on our daily weather.

However, although the effects of the pattern change may be felt in some areas around the world, here at home, the shift to El Niño is a little closer to what we remember as “normal” than many might think.

The fall months continue to bring El Niño, which, unlike La Niña, is a warming of sea surface temperatures in the Pacific Ocean at the equator. (La Niña is the opposite or colder temperature.)


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The peak of hurricane season occurs in mid-September.



The return of El Niño generally means less activity along the East Coast for hurricane season, which, according to the National Hurricane Center’s latest forecast, remains expected to be a slightly below-average season for named storms.

While the peak season continues into early October, the increasing number of named storms in August and early September has only caught up to the original below-average forecast of 6-11 hurricanes and 14-21 named storms in total.

Back home, El Niño generally means slightly drier than average conditions. However, extremes are unlikely to be felt in September, October or November.

“Normal” precipitation takes us from 3.63 inches of rain in September to just under 3 inches of rain by November, which will likely be fairly close to the totals for these months in 2023.


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Average rainfall forecast for fall 2023.




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There is a 50-50 chance of above average temperatures during the fall months. Expect near normality most of the time.



In terms of temperatures, the fall months are expected to be a little above average, but not by much at all. Our average temperatures take us from an average high of 82 degrees on September 1 to nearly 70 degrees by the end of the month heading into October. The largest swing is generally felt with average highs in the upper 40s after Thanksgiving.

The most interesting observation of the changing climate pattern does not occur in the fall months, but in the winter. The last true El Niño winter occurred from December 2015 to February 2016.


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The heaviest snowstorm on record fell during the recent El Niño winter. Stay tuned!



That winter gave us a record snowstorm, when 30 inches fell between January 22 and 23 at Harrisburg International Airport and broke the all-time record single-day snowfall total, with 26.4 inches of snow in a 24-hour period from January 23. . Stay tuned!

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