White Christmas Likely. 2 Chances For Snow This Week

One week away from Christmas. That seems hard to believe. For some of you in our northern counties, a white Christmas is pretty much guaranteed even without additional snow. For Milwaukee south, there is not much snow on the ground. Speaking of the snow on the ground, I want to share a great picture of a sun pillar that was on ulocal.

If you are wondering what that beam of vertical light is extending to the clouds, that is a sun pillar. It is created in a couple of different ways. Either the sun’s light is reflected from falling tiny ice crystals, or in this case, reflecting off of the fresh snow in Dodge county. This picture is from Beaver Dam. Very cool.

Now, on to the two chances for snow this week. First of all, if you need to travel or get shopping done, Sunday will be nice and quiet. The first round of snow comes as a low pressure center that will move out of northern Rockies and head across or just south of Wisconsin. This does not look like a big storm, but certainly could be a nuisance and cause travel trouble. As usual, the models are not in complete agreement. The timing is still a question, but accumulating snow is very likely.

Here is the GFS model for Monday night at midnight.

The GFS brings the snow into our area by late in the day on Monday with the heaviest falling Monday night. The GFS paints us with 2″-4″ of snow. Now, the NAM.

The above picture is from 6am Monday. The NAM holds the snowfall back until Monday night. I am leaning toward the NAM. It has performed the best with our first two snows of the year. Finally, here is the snow total from our RPM model.

I think the amounts are in line with what we will receive. A general 2″-4″ of snow. The timing of the RPM is way too fast. It brings snow into SE Wisconsin by midday Monday. I think it will be slower, just like the last rain/snow we had.

After this goes by, another round moves our way on Thursday-Friday. The NAM and RPM do not go out far enough to forecast later in the week, so here is the GFS for Thursday night.

I still have a lot of questions about the Thursday/Friday storm. It does not coincide well with LRC. Let’s see how it plays out as the week goes on.

Regardless of the second round, I am pretty confident that we will have white Christmas around here. Thanks for reading.



10 Responses

  1. The GFS has been playing with that Christmas Eve storm all week. It doesn’t fit the LRC at all. It’s going to be an interesting week to see what happens. I still think the GFS will get rid of it this week.

    • Steven,

      The GFS has been brutal lately. As for LRC, see lrcweather post.

  2. It does fit the LRC, but you have to really look at the smaller waves and not just the big ones. 😉 I think that storm is here to stay, but the question is where will it affect?

    RE:GFS…I am not a fan of it right now. I hope it gets better soon!

    • Guess I’ll take a closer look. Thanks for the help 🙂

    • This is what is fun about learning more about LRC. The short wave that will drop though came through back in November, but was dry for us. It is easy (I’m speaking for myself) to pay too close of attention to past climatology. I may have put too much credence on lack of precip after the November 4th light rain. I’m watching and learning.

      • That’s what I did too. The lack of precip threw me off. I see the short wave now. Lots to learn.

  3. The first run of the cycle this year produced a lot of features coming through dry . Even the big wind storm was dry the first time and look what it did this last go round. Either way, it looks like most of the action for that Christmas Eve storm is to the south (for now) with only .1 precip (1 inch of snow) here.

    • Daniel,

      I’m not sure what to make of Friday storm yet. Way too early for any numbers. Storm track definitely in question.


  4. Great stuff gentlemen, great stuff. Looking forward to observing what will become of the next couple weeks.

    We have a healthy 8 inch snow pack up here in Oshkosh and I’ve witnessed plenty of winter sports taking place on the lake and in the fields. Hopefully we all can maintain the pretty white and keep the yuck at bay thru the new year.

    • Thanks, Josh,

      You should have a nice white coating on Monday night and play a wait and see for Friday.


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