For everyone hoping to throw it back to a bitter, old-fashioned New England winter, have I got good news for both of you.

The Farmer’s Almanac is calling for sleet, rain, hail, and a whole lot of snowstorms for 2023-24. Said the Almanac:

“There are indications that an El Niño (an unusually high-water temperature off the Pacific Coast of South America), will be brewing in the latter half of 2023, lasting into the winter of 2024. If we consider that alongside our tried-and-true forecast formula, it means that cold temperatures should prevail throughout the country and bring snow, sleet, and ice.”

They may be onto something, as Mount Washington saw its first snow of the season in August. August!

But just why do we trust the Almanac to begin with? Like so many things here in New England, it all goes back to a prank gone strangely right.

A popular legend is that in 1816, an edition of The Old Farmers' Almanac was mistakenly printed in which rain, hail, and snow were predicted for the month of July. This was believed to be an error, or a prank on Almanac founder Robert B. Thomas.

Thomas apparently rushed to have the Almanacs recalled, but to no avail. But in an odd twist when July rolled around, it apparently snowed!

Cue some old-timey Curb Your Enthusiasm theme.

According to, New England and Canada did indeed have wintry summers in 1816, as Mount Tambora in the East Indies erupted and sent volcanic dust drifting from continent to continent.

And allegedly, when that happened, Thomas went from frantically retracting his publication’s bizarre prediction to claiming victory (the more things change…).

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