For many, snowfall on Christmas Day is almost as important as Santa Claus himself. This year, however, snowy scenes may be found mostly in movies.
A mild weather pattern will grip the nation, leaving few regions the opportunity to see flakes fly on Dec. 25.
Just under 10 days from the holiday, the best chances to experience a white Christmas will be across the northeastern and north-central United States.
However, that doesn’t mean you’ll be able to watch the snow falling on Christmas Day or even Christmas Eve, forecasters say.
“I would expect to see some snow still on the ground over northern New England and northern New York but with a mild pattern around at that time, it might be tough to see much fresh snow,” AccuWeather Meteorologist Alan Reppert said.
“Temperatures might even be in the 40s in the afternoon, making for a slightly above-average Christmas Day,” he said.
Though it will bear a stark contrast to the recent extreme cold across the Northeast, it won’t be quite as warm as the Christmas of 2015, when many were able to don t-shirts instead of holiday sweaters.
Those spending the holiday in northern Michigan, Wisconsin and parts of the northern Plains may be in luck; cooler air will allow snow that’s already fallen to stick around into the holiday.
“Temperatures will be cold up until Christmas, but look to be turning warmer even for the Plains for around Christmas Day,” Reppert said.
Colder air will instead hover over the West and the Rockies.
Snow is likely to fall in the typical areas of the mountains and in higher elevations. However, cities such as Denver and Billings, Montana, will likely miss out.
A lack of cold air along the Washington and Oregon coastline will cause any Christmas precipitation to fall as rain only.
Some of this may stretch into northern California, translating to snow in the higher elevations.