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Forecasters: Snowy Winter Ahead

There may be big storms in January and February of 2013.

Following a snow “drought” this past winter, the mid-Atlantic and southern New England are expected to get a snow dump this winter, including the metropolitan Washington area.

AccuWeather.com is predicting big storms during January and February with the potential for large snowstorms to create travel headaches in the major cities.

"The I-95 cities could get hit pretty good," AccuWeather.com lead long-range forecaster Paul Pastelok said in a statement. "It's a matter of getting the cold to phase in with the huge systems that we are going to see coming out of the southern branch of the jet stream this year."

The normal snowfall amount for the Washington metropolitan area is 14.6 inches. Snowfall amounts in Northern Virginia have been erratic over recent winters.

In the winter of 2009-10, the National Weather Service recorded 73.2 inches of snowfall in Dulles, said weather service observing program leader Calvin Meadows. The following winter, snowfall in the area dropped to 12.6 inches, Meadows said.

This past winter, in 2011-12, only 3.7 inches of snow were recorded at Dulles, he said.

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