Since it has finally cooled down enough for us to actually speak of winter weather without people laughing we thought it would be a good idea to peer into the future. Well, we are aren't peering, the forecasters with the Climate Prediction Center are doing the look ahead, we're just telling you what they think.

What they think for the winter months in South Louisiana is not very wintery. The three-month outlook that was released by NOAA about two weeks ago suggests that much of the Gulf South will be drier during the next three months and we will also be warmer.

If you tend to understand things better with pictures here's the way the three-month outlook appears when you put it in map form. First, here's the outlook for temperatures.

cpc.ncep.noaa.gov

As you can see a large portion of the country is expected to experience a much warmer winter. That should bode well for keeping all the ice and snow well to the north of I-10. Sorry Santa but it looks like another Christmas with the AC on in South Louisiana.

While the temperature forecast is calling for readings to be above normal for the winter months, the precipitation forecast is a 180 degree opposite. The precipitation outlook for all of Louisiana appears to be rather dry and dare I say dusty. Here's the way the map looks for that subject.

cpc.ncep.noaa.gov

As you can see the entire state of Louisiana is forecast to receive below-normal precipitation for the winter months. While that might seem like a good thing, remember the right amount of rain plays a large part in how successful the crawfish season is. So, we have that, plus what could be the beginnings of a very dry spring and summer season to consider.

Remember these long-range outlooks are the equivalent to a scientific best guess. Forecasters use a lot of historical data and global modeling to arrive at these interpretations and they are by no means written in stone.