Weather

What are the chances of a white Christmas for central NC?

Posted December 14, 2017 8:51 a.m. EST
Updated July 13, 2018 2:06 p.m. EDT

— If you're dreaming of a white Christmas, it might be time to wake up.

A fairly calm weather pattern blanketing a large chunk of the United States is partially to blame for keeping the chance of snow low. But WRAL meteorologist Elizabeth Gardner said to even have a chance at Christmas snow, two weather events have to happen at the same time.

First, a frigid blast of cold air has to drop down from the north and set up shop in North Carolina. Then, a low pressure system has to develop in the Gulf of Mexico or the Atlantic Ocean to bring warm, moist air to the Southeast.

"But it has to be so cold that when that warm, moist moves in, that it chills it all down and produces snow," Gardner said. "So, are we going to have that cold air? Well, right now all that cold air is coming into the West."

The chilly air floats its way east toward North Carolina late this week, but at the end of next week, warmer air filters back in. So, the chances of seeing treetops glisten and sleigh bells in the snow is fairly low.

"It is not looking good for us," Gardner said. "Statistically, it doesn't look great, anyway.

"(We have) a 3 percent chance in central North Carolina."

Cows in the Snow in Saxapahaw!