What are our chances for a white Christmas? - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

What are our chances for a white Christmas?


Saturday's combination of rain and warm temperatures ate up much of Central Wisconsin's snow base this weekend.  And with fewer than 10 days until Christmas, the possibility of the region missing a so-called "white" Christmas has come top of mind for many looking forward to the holiday.

A Christmas is considered "white" when there is at least 1" of snow on the ground on Dec. 25th.  And if nothing were to change in the weather between now and the holiday, this would be a "green" Christmas, as most of the Wausau metroplex has lost it's snow base.

Northern Wisconsin is part of a few areas of the United States where "white" Christmases are considered the norm.  According to the National Weather Service, points north of Wausau historically see an inch of snow on the ground on Dec. 25th between 75 and 90% of the time, with the chances increasing closer to the border with upper Michigan.  

Snow lovers and "white" Christmas proponents will want to pay close attention to the forecast this week.  The forecast models are advertising the potential for an organized storm system to develop over the southwestern United States, strengthen as it moves over the Plains, and become a large winter storm by the time it reaches the North American Great Lakes.

Of important note to Wisconsin is that the current projections place the track of the storm's center moving south of the state.  That course would provide moisture, but combine it with colder air from Canada resulting in snow over much of Wisconsin, Minnesota and Iowa.  Warmer air would be contained south of the storm's center of circulation giving rain to Indiana and Ohio. 

Forecasts change and systems don't always come together as expected.  But should this system come to fruition, any snow Wisconsin picks up would likely last through Christmas.  Temperatures on the western side of the system are expected to bring daytime highs on Friday and Saturday in the 20s.  

Stay up on the latest forecast projections as we get closer to Christmas with the Storm Track 9 weather team, Newsline 9 and waow.com.      

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