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Farmers' Almanac predicts snowy Alberta winter

A 199-year-old weather forecasting system is predicting a 'very snowy' winter for Alberta.

Precipitation could be above average, says 199-year-old weather forecasting system

The winter forecast for Alberta will have skiers doing cartwheels. (Liam Richards/Canadian Press)

While meteorologists are calling for a relatively warm, dry winter in the Prairies — this year's Farmers' Almanac says Albertans should be getting ready for just the opposite.

"Cold and very snowy," said Peter Geiger, editor of the Farmers' Almanac and the Canadian Farmers' Almanac.

"We think that the precipitation is going to be above average, or at least the snowfall."

I know your weather can be good, bad and — nothing.- Peter Geiger, editor of Farmers' Almanac

Though Geiger lives in Lewiston, Maine, he's kept a close eye on Alberta's changing weather patterns since he visited the province in 1987 — the year before the Calgary Olympics.

​"I predicted it would be mild the year before and then you got no snow, and then the next year I nailed what it was supposed to be, so I know your weather can be good, bad and — nothing."

Luckily, we don't need to get those shovels out just yet. The snow won't fly until mid-December, according to the Canadian Farmers' Almanac. (Martine Laberge/CBC)

Geiger says Alberta farmers can expect relatively good weather for the fall and "significant rain" by mid-November.

"The middle part of December is going to be fairly stormy, even with snow," he said.

The Farmers' Almanac, not to be confused with the Old Farmer's Almanac, has been publishing its North American weather predictions since 1818.

"They're based upon sun-spot activity, planet positions, the effect the moon has on the earth and a formula we've had for almost 200 years. And we do the weather two years in advance," said Geiger.

In all that time, Geiger says they've only had seven forecasters and the current one has been at it for the last 30 years.

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