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After winter's fast start, will it ever come back?

When could the cold, snow return?

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ROANOKE, Va – Winter got off to a very fast start with many spots receiving a top-5 snowstorm for the month of December.

The quick start put our region ahead of some typically snowy cities across the country. Here's where snowfall stands as of January 4.

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Snow cover in the country has increased since Christmas, but most of that fell in the western U.S...not here.

That's brought up the question, "Is winter ever coming back?" 

WHERE IS WINTER?

Winter is currently hanging out in Canada and the western U.S. Right now, the frigid Arctic air is being pretty introverted - just staying at home for a while.

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The jet stream for the last couple of weeks has been mainly in a persistent west-to-east orientation, not allowing much of that cold air to pour into the eastern U.S.

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WINTER'S REVENGE?

While it has been mild, it is important to remember that we are only four days into January and still 75 days away from spring.

Historically, most of our snow locally falls in January and February.

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WHAT'S TO COME?

The stratosphere miles above is warming, which typically spells Arctic outbreaks in the lower 48. Look for winter to return with a vengeance sometime late January and early February.

Just because it's quiet, doesn't mean it's over. It's not going to be frigid and snowy all 90 days of winter. As the cliche goes, "pack your patience."


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