Dreaming of a white Christmas? This map shows where there will most likely be snow on the ground on Dec. 25, as well as the places where the probability of that happening has a snowball’s chance in — well, you know.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has released an interactive map of the lower 48 states that shows the historic probability that a place will have at least one inch of snow on the ground on Dec. 25.
It draws on three-decade averages of several climatological measurements, including daily and monthly normal temperatures, precipitation, snowfall, frost/freeze dates and more from about 9,800 NOAA National Weather Service stations across the country.
The darkest gray areas show places where the probability of seeing a white coverlet of snow coating the yard on Christmas Day is less than 10%. It should come as no surprise that warmer and dryer spots along the West Coast, the Gulf Coast and the Deep South are the least likely to see any snow on Christmas.
The white areas, on the other hand, suggest places where the probability of waking up to Christmas snowdrifts is greater than 90%. These snowy spots include Minnesota, Maine, upstate New York, the Allegheny Mountain country of Pennsylvania and West Virginia, the Rockies and the Sierra Nevada Mountains, as well as anywhere in Idaho.
Indeed, the first wintry storm of the season already began dropping wet, heavy snow on New England over the weekend, leaving about 200,000 Maine residents without power on Saturday.
Click on NOAA’s interactive White Christmas map here for a closer look at your local forecast.
Of course, predicting the weather is a notoriously imperfect science, so your actual weather conditions on Dec. 25 may vary. NOAA suggests that consumers use this map as a guide to show where snow on the ground is more likely — which can help with making purchasing decisions such as whether to invest in snow tires on your vehicle, or how much to tip a delivery person when they’re delivering your Grubhub order through the white and drifted snow.
And the NOAA report recommends that you look up your local forecast at Weather.gov for the most accurate Christmas Day weather prediction in your neck of the woods.