An El Niño Winter is in play for 2015-16. What does this mean for us in Rockford, Chicago, Madison, and the Midwest?
It's more than just a word. It is a weather change that will drastically effect our winter ahead in the Midwest.

Joe Raedle, Getty Images


What is El Niño? It is a warming of the equatorial belt of the Pacific Ocean westward from South America, is a climate and environmental event that occurs every two to seven years, and one is now in progress. Currently, water temperatures are currently running two to six degrees above normal in much of the tropical Pacific Ocean, and further warming is expected in coming months.

Joe Raedle, Getty Images


All of the El Niño events will have an effect on weather in the United States and in Illinois, Wisconsin and the entire Midwest as well.

According to WGN TV Meteorologist Tom Skilling, "El Niños usually bring above normal temperatures, below normal precipitation and less snow than normal to Chicago and the northern United States during the winter. Above normal precipitation and below normal temperatures usually occur in the southern tier of states from California to Florida".​

Looks like it could be a milder and drier winter in Rockford, Madison, and the rest of the Midwest. One thing we learn living in the Midwest, is that the weather changes every ten minutes.

Stay tuned to Q98.5 for all of your winter weather needs.