Just when you think you can trust a groundhog, the weather gurus at the Climate Prediction Center throw Michigan a curveball. Let's dive into their latest prediction and see what the dynamic duo, comprised of El Nino and La Nina, have in store for the Mitten State's spring forecast.

Related: Historically Strong El Niño's Impact on Michigan

To catch you up, Michigan's warmer-than-average winter can be credited to the impact of El Nino, which is a heat wave in the Pacific Ocean. How does that make a difference to Midwest temps?

How Warmer and Colder Temperatures in the Pacific Ocean Impact Michigan Weather

Goodbye El Nino, Say Hello to La Nina in Michigan
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Think of El Nino as a big warm blanket spread over the Pacific Ocean. These warmer waters heat the air currents blowing above them, known as the jet stream. These high-altitude winds eventually blow over Michigan and bring warmer temperatures.

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According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the waters of the Pacific Ocean are beginning to cool down, which means Michigan could see a much different second half of winter.

What La Nina Means For Michigan's Winter

Goodbye El Nino, Say Hello to La Nina in Michigan
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When the jet stream cools down, so does Michigan's temperature. La Nina also brings with it an increased chance of precipitation, which could mean a snowier, icier, and slushier February and beyond for the Great Lakes State.

Related: Blizzard of 1978: When Mother Nature's Fury Shut Down Michigan

Keep in mind these are predictions based on observations and forecast models. Much like the snowflakes they can bring, no two La Ninas are alike. Maybe we'll get one or two more opportunities for snow days before spring arrives in Michigan.

Blizzard of 1978: When Mother Nature's Fury Shut Down Michigan

The Blizzard of 1978 was an iconic storm system made possible by two converging fronts, one from the Gulf of Mexico, meeting a northern system from Canada creating record snowfall and hurricane-force winds that shutdown Michigan's transportation system, both on the ground and in the air. Here's a look at WOOD TV 8's coverage from January 25th through January 27th, 1978.

Gallery Credit: Scott Clow

LOOK: The most expensive weather and climate disasters in recent decades

Stacker ranked the most expensive climate disasters by the billions since 1980 by the total cost of all damages, adjusted for inflation, based on 2021 data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The list starts with Hurricane Sally, which caused $7.3 billion in damages in 2020, and ends with a devastating 2005 hurricane that caused $170 billion in damage and killed at least 1,833 people. Keep reading to discover the 50 of the most expensive climate disasters in recent decades in the U.S.

Gallery Credit: KATELYN LEBOFF

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