What are your chances of a White Christmas?

A photo of our state bird braving the elements in Hanover... 3" so far

A photo of our state bird braving the elements in Hanover... 3" so far

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) – Whether you’re staying home in central Virginia this Christmas, or traveling across the country to be with loved ones, you can see what the odds are of you having a White Christmas.

The scientists at the National Climatic Data Center have compiled a new U.S. map showing the odds of a White Christmas, as defined by an inch or more of snow on the ground December 25.

Historical-Probability-of-a-White-Christmas-Map

This map is based on snow-cover using the most recent 1981–2010 Climate Normals.

NCDC describes this “new normal” data set:
“The 1981–2010 Climate Normals are the latest three-decade averages of several climatological measurements. This data set contains daily and monthly Normals of temperature, precipitation, snowfall, heating and cooling degree days, frost/freeze dates, and growing degree days calculated from observations at approximately 9,800 stations operated by NOAA’s National Weather Service.”

Central Virgina is in the “slim chance” of a White Christmas range. Richmond has an 8% chance of a White Christmas.  But don’t let those low odds get you down if you’re dreaming of a White Christmas!

We did have a White Christmas just a few years ago in 2010. On Christmas Day officially at Richmond International Airport, 2.7″ of snow fell, with an additional 1.6″ on December 26, 2010.

Richmond’s snowiest Christmas Day was almost a hundred years ago! In 1914, 5.4″ of snow fell on December 25 in Richmond. Here’s some other regional Christmas climatology from the National Weather Service in Wakefield:

ChristmasTable

January and February are historically our snowiest months in Richmond.

daily_snowfall_prob

Meteorologist Carrie Rose
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