The U.S. winter of 2014 seems like the setting for Game of Thrones - the popular HBO series based on the "A Song of Ice and Fire" books where half of the realm freezes, while the other half parches.
The northern portion of the United States lies under snow and suffers frigid temperatures. Currently, snow covers 63.6 percent of the United States to an average depth of 6.1 inches, according to the National Weather Service's National Snow Analysis. Sub-freezing temperatures accompany this white blanket.
How 'Game of Thrones' Resurrects Ancient Wolves
Earlier in 2014, a weather phenomenon, known as a polar vortex, chilled North America to record low temperatures. The extreme cold may have cost the U.S. economy approximately $5 billion from transportation delays, increased heating bills and lost productivity, reported CNBC.
Meanwhile, the southwestern United States parched in an ongoing drought. The entire U.S. West Coast continues to lack precipitation. The U.S. Drought Monitor reports that 8.77 percent of California classified as under "exceptional drought" conditions, as of late January. Also in January, the drought spread and engulfed nearly all of New Mexico and the Gulf Coast of Texas. The outlook for February remains dry for the Great Plains, Southwest and West Coast.