INDIANA — La Niña is expected to end this spring with an “ENSO-neutral” pattern setting up and expected to continue into the early summer months.

This will be the first spring in a few years without the presence of a La Niña. This pattern creates challenges in long-range forecasting. It is still unclear when an El Niño will set up.

“The crystal ball is even blurrier than usual,” said Michelle L’Heureux, a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration meteorologist with the Climate Prediction Center. “ENSO neutral effectively means that conditions across Tropical Pacific are closer to average, so there isn’t a big disruption in the atmospheric circulation that is offered by El Niño La Niña.”

What does this mean for spring in Indiana?

The Climate Prediction Center released its forecast for the spring months. There is an above-average chance of a warmer-than-average spring in Indiana. The southern half of the lower 48 is expected to see above-average temperatures this spring.

(Map: NOAA/National Weather Service)

The seasonal precipitation outlook looks wet for the Ohio Valley. Indiana is in the above-average chance for a wetter-than-average spring along with the rest of the Ohio Valley. Areas to the southwest are forecasted to be drier than average along with parts of Florida.

(Map: NOAA/National Weather Service)

The Climate Prediction Center predicts a 60% chance of El Niño returning by late summer.