Office of the Washington State Climatologist

Climate Outlook

What’s Next for the Pacific Northwest?

El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO): El Niño

According to the Climate Prediction Center (CPC), El Niño conditions are currently present in the tropical equatorial Pacific Ocean. Average sea surface temperature (SST) anomalies are the largest over the eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean, and both the equatorial ocean and atmosphere are reflecting El Niño conditions. ENSO models are indicating high chances (97%) that El Niño will persist through next winter (December-January-February), and it is likely to be a “moderate” to “strong” event. Washington winters tend to be warmer than normal during El Niño, and there are higher chances of a below normal snowpack by April 1. The ENSO phase is taken into account in the CPC outlooks featured below, as well as long-term trends and seasonal climate model output.

What does this mean for Washington in the coming months?

The CPC one month temperature outlook for September has equal chances of below, equal to, or above normal temperatures statewide. September precipitation is also uncertain, with equal chances (i.e., 33.3% chance of each of the three outcomes) of below, equal to, or above normal precipitation across the whole state.

The three-month outlook September through November (SON) is indicating higher chances of above normal temperatures across Washington State. The odds are highest in eastern WA, with chances between 50 and 60% on the three-tiered scale. For SON precipitation, there are higher chances of below normal precipitation statewide. The odds are slightly higher for western WA, between 40 and 50%, compared to eastern WA.

Last Updated: 8/21/2023

Climate Prediction Resources

NWS Local 3-Month Temperature Outlook
Select a location plotted on the map to view the local outlook.

Quillayute Port Angeles Hoquiam Centralia Olympia Seattle-Tacoma Mount Vernon Astoria, OR Hillsboro, OR Portland, OR Troutdale, OR Government Camp, OR Hood River, OR The Dalles, OR Pendleton, OR Richland Walla Walla Lewiston, ID Pullman Spokane Republic Omak Ross Dam Bellingham Plain Cle Elum Mt. Rainier-Paradise Yakima Ellensburg Wenatchee Ephrata

The links below provide access to global and regional climate predictions.

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