WEATHER BLOG: Traveling to a white Christmas

WEATHER BLOG: Traveling to a white Christmas

TAMPA, Fla. – The recent colder weather in Tampa Bay may have brought some holiday cravings to the air. However, nothing screams Christmas more than a new layer of snow covering the ground on Christmas morning.

As far as we are concerned for Tampa, there is no chance of snowballs that we will have a white Christmas. Bah nonsense. However, many Floridians travel north for the holidays where a white Christmas is not out of reach. We thought it would be interesting to see which areas tend to see a white Christmas every year.

The map below shows the historical probability of a white Christmas with at least an inch of snow on the ground for Christmas morning. The odds range from zero here in Tampa to almost 100% for some cities in the Rockies. If you want to guarantee a white Christmas in every year, Aspen, Colorado is the place. Aspen is one of the few cities in the United States that enjoys a white Christmas almost every year.

History says that most of Idaho, Minnesota, Maine, Upstate New York, the Allegheny Mountains of Pennsylvania and West Virginia, along with the Rockies and Sierra Nevada Mountains to the west, are quite likely to have a white Christmas to observe. These areas are often cooler and support the snow package for a longer period of time.

While the Great Plains often see snow leading into Christmas, large temperature swings can melt snow quickly, leading to a green Christmas. This area usually has a much lower chance of a white Christmas.

Looking ahead to the temperature outlook for the week ahead, the eastern and central United States is likely to be above average, while the west coast is seeing cooler weather. The warmer weather over the Great Lakes and Northeast will lead to melting snow as we approach Christmas morning.