Advertisement

Dreaming of a white Christmas? Here’s this year’s chances

Since 1869, there has been at least 1″ of snow on the ground 66 percent of the time on Christmas Day.
Published: Dec. 15, 2020 at 10:39 AM CST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - Christmas is only 10 days away, and you are probably starting to wonder if it is going to be a white Christmas.

There is good and bad news when it comes to our chances for a white Christmas this year.

Let’s start with the good news!

Since weather records began, there has been 1″ of snow on the ground 66 percent of time on Christmas Day in Madison. The first Christmas Day on record in Madison was in 1869. The last time 1″ of snow was on the ground in Madison on Christmas day was in 2017, so Madison is probably due for a white Christmas.

White Christmas Climatology - Madison
White Christmas Climatology - Madison(WMTV NBC15)

With 10 days to go until Christmas, there is 5″ of snow on the ground. This is only the 22nd time this much snow or more has been on the ground on December 15th in Madison. For us not to have a white Christmas, all the snow would have to melt before December 25.

With 10 days to go until Christmas, there is 5” of snow on the ground. This is only the 22nd...
With 10 days to go until Christmas, there is 5” of snow on the ground. This is only the 22nd time this much snow or more has been on the ground on December 15 in Madison. For us not to have a white Christmas all that snow would have to melt before December 25. Looking back at the previous Christmases following a December 15 with a snow depth of 5” or more, 20 of them had at least one inch of snow on the ground on Christmas day!(WMTV NBC15)

Looking back at the previous Christmases following a December 15th with a snow depth of 5″ or more, 20 of them had at least one inch of snow on the ground on Christmas day.

Now it’s time for the bad news.

Temperatures will warm above freezing later this week. High temperatures Friday through Sunday will be in the mid to upper 30s.

Temperature Trend - Forecast Highs
Temperature Trend - Forecast Highs(WMTV NBC15)

The temperature outlook from the Climate Prediction Center leading up to Christmas Day also favors above average temperatures. This is not what you want the temperature outlook to look like for the days leading up to Christmas Day if you are hoping for a white Christmas. With warm December weather expected, there is a chance the snow could melt.

Temperature Outlook - December 20-24
Temperature Outlook - December 20-24(WMTV NBC15)

In 1904, there was 5″ of snow on the ground on December 15 and by December 25 it was gone.

Luckily, a heavy, wet snow fell over the previous weekend. A heavy, wet snow will not melt as quickly as a drier snow.

Right now, there isn’t a lot of snow in the forecast. There is only a low chance of snow showers Friday night into Saturday morning.

Snowfall Potential through Sunday
Snowfall Potential through Sunday(WMTV NBC15)

Copyright 2020 WMTV. All rights reserved.