It has been a wet year across much of eastern North Carolina. Typically, we need tropical systems to produce above normal rainfall but not this year. A series of storms coming out of the Gulf of Mexico have produced considerable rainfall throughout the late summer and fall. The storm systems have been energized by a stronger southern stream this year. The stronger stream is primarily the result of El Nino conditions in the Pacific Ocean. El Nino usually develops every 4 to 5 years and tends to increase rainfall across the southern United States during the late fall and winter. So far just over 55 inches of rain has fallen at the WITN Weather Station. Last year at this time only 38 inches had fallen. The yearly average from January 1 through December 9 is about 48 inches so we are about 7 inches above normal for the year. We are likely to see more rainfall over the next few months so keep those umbrellas handy.