Chicago's expected to see less snow and higher-than-average temperatures throughout the winter, said Paul Pastelok, a meteorologist for AccuWeather.
"Not all that bad. Nothing too brutal," Pastelok said. "Nothing really serious from most of the winter overall. ... Much different than the last couple of years."
The beginning and end of the winter could have cold snaps, Pastelok said, but things will be mild "during the heart of the winter season."
"I think people will still be outside, doing stuff once in a while," Pastelok said. "People will notice."
Kelly Bauer says Pastelok is confident this won't be a brutal winter:
Chicagoans can thank an unusually strong El Nino that will keep Arctic cold air from coming south, Pastelok said. But, colder air could "work down" in February toward the beginning of spring.
The nice winter weather would follow a fall that's been full of 70-degree days and sun for Chicagoans. Temperatures are "way above the normal by at least 10, some places 20, 25 degrees above normal," Pastelok said.
October was drier and warmer than usual for Illinois, with an average temperature of 55.8 degrees, which is 1.7 degrees higher than the norm, according to Climate Illinois. At the same time, there was less rain: Average precipitation was down to 1.47 inches from the average of 3.26 inches.
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