Are we getting a white Christmas this year?

While it has been a wet and dreary start to December in 2022, just one snowstorm can bring a white Christmas for the first time in years. What exactly does that mean and how likely is it?

Allan Nosoff

Dec 16, 2022, 5:01 PM

Updated 547 days ago

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While it has been a wet and dreary start to December in 2022, just one snowstorm can bring a white Christmas for the first time in years. What exactly does that mean and how likely is it?

In order for it to be considered a white Christmas, there needs to be 1 inch of snow (or more) on the ground on Christmas morning. That does not mean it needs to snow from the sky! It can be snowfall already on the ground from an earlier snowstorm.
History tells us the chances of a white Christmas are generally not high. The last time the majority of the tri-state area saw a white Christmas was 2009 -- over a decade ago. A major snowstorm dumped as much as 2 feet of snow that lingered on the ground through Christmas Day.
Based on NOAA historic averages, the chances for a white Christmas are lowest to the south and highest to the north. They are as low as 4% for South Jersey and as high as 40% for northern parts of the Hudson Valley. White Christmas odds are about 1 in 10 for New York City, central New Jersey and Long Island.

Like in 2009, it only takes one snowstorm around Christmastime to provide the area with a white Christmas. With an arctic blast of cold possible by Christmas weekend, chances this year are higher than most, especially if a storm system develops at the same time.
Make sure to stick with the News 12 Storm Watch Team every day, guiding you through the critical holiday rush with any cold or snow that may be on the horizon.


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