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  • Writer's pictureTodd Yakoubian

Christmas Cold

This Christmas should end up MUCH different that last year when we had record breaking highs in the 70s and low 80s!

While nothing is every guaranteed, all the the modeling points toward a very cold period for much of the United States, especially the Heartland. Another way to look at it, I have NOT seen any evidence of warm weather this Christmas. How cold? This has real potential to be the coldest Christmas in many years. In 2017, we had a high of 37. In 2012, the high was 43. Remember, that was set early in the day with falling temperatures. The big snow came late Christmas day. We had a high of 39 in 2010, 2004, and 2001. The high on Christmas 2000 was only 26°. While it is impossible to predict specific high temperatures this far out, this Christmas has potential to challenge those years.

Look at the 5 day period, Wednesday December 21st through Monday December 26th on the European ensemble run this Monday. It indicates temperatures may be 10 to 15 degrees below average. An ensemble is a group of models with small variations in each one. What you see below is a mean. Some will be colder and some of the members of the ensemble will be warmer. This is remarkable to see such cold show up in this long range period. FYI, the Euro ensembles include almost 50 model members if I remember correctly.

So if you have cold in place, what about precip? Remember what Meteorologist Barry Brandt says, "If arctic air is in place, anything can happen".

I debated whether or not to post this next map, but it's the Arkansas Weather Blog so why not? It's the probability of at least 1'' of snow over the next 15 days. For example, this does NOT mean there's a 20%, 30%, 40%, etc chance for 1'' of snow. It does say there's something brewing. I find it hard to believe we escape the remainder of this month without winter weather.

Summary, the cold is coming, but it's impossible to predict how cold and if there will be any snow/ice. What I can tell you is the chance for some sort of snow/ice around Christmas is greater this year compared to average and compared to many previous years. Christmas 2022 should end up MUCH different that last year. Don't get your hopes up! Please, don't do that. However, there's potential with this pattern!

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