Météo Consult, a weather research consultancy in France, has released its latest forecast for the 2010-2011 winter season. According to the research centre, this winter will start off early and cold before the average temperatures rise slightly in February.

The La Niña in the east Pacific influences winter in western Europe, generally making for a colder-than-usual season. This meteorological phenomenon is not the only one that impacts winter in Europe. Air pressure from the north Atlantic and the Arctic zones also help chill European winters.

The effects began in the second half of October, when air from Scandinavia made temperatures in France drop. November will be cold and humid, more so than usual, with bouts of stormy weather. According to Météo Consult, the first snows could hit the plains in the more continental parts of France.

December is predicted to be colder than average but dry. The south of France, however, may experience a fair share of rain, wind, and the first snows on the mountains. Further north, snow may occasionally fall on the plains.

These trends are expected to continue throughout January, with temperatures progressing towards seasonal norms. Temperatures in France will rise slightly in February thanks to the influence of milder temperatures in the countries of northern Europe.

Although it is too early to precisely predict the weather for March and the rest of spring, Météo Consult's current data hints at a chilly, dry, and sunny spring.

Météo Consult updates its seasonal predictions on the 10th of every month.

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