Even the one of the strongest El Nino on record needs to connect with the Atmosphere(coupling) to have it’s full effects felt. Mid winter may see El Nino’s effect dampened. looking back I found this was somewhat the case during the Super Elnino of 1982/83.
While one might argue about the below normal snowfall remember, this was the case last winter as well when we had neutral or weak El Nino conditions.
The PNA pattern seems to stray from what is expected so this forecast is factoring that in. It’s duration seems to be until around mid January
Forecast is made using multiple sources over a timeframe. no single or proprietary source.
Overall Winter 2015/16 should see near to Above normal temperatures with the exception of the Northwest(slightly below) and near(in the mountains) to below Snowfall. Well below in south-eastern Alberta.
December: Near to slightly above normal overall and dry.
After the mild first half; the 2nd half of December will be generally colder than normal with lows down to -35C a few times over most of the province. This will cancel some or all of the positive temperature anomalies seen during the first two weeks.
January: Near normal to slightly Above. Dry
Generally cold with a few Chinooks in the south west parts. Chance of milder conditions towards the end of the Month
February:Near normal to warmer than normal. remaining dry.
Becoming very mild late in the month, possibly melting most of the snow by the begining of march. Cold early on may linger
Sneak peak(not to be seen as a seasonal forecast): CFSv2 seems to point toward more significant warm anomalies in March, April, and May. It’s a very long way out but something to watch for. If it remains by the time of the Spring 2016 forecast; it may indicate an early and intense kick-off to the fire season.