Don’t hold your breath for a White Christmas

There may be a skiff of snow, but more is needed for an official white Christmas, and more is not in the forecast for Kelowna.

Officially, you likely won’t have a white christmas this year.

But, there could be a dusting of the white stuff around.

Meteorologist Doug Lundquist of the Mountain Weather Services Office of Environment Canada in Kelowna, says officially there has to be snow cover of at least two centimetres for it to be considered a white Christmas.

So, although there are flurries forecast for Christmas Eve, it’s expected to melt Christmas Day, even if a couple of centimetres fell the previous day.

That is, unless you’re in Williams Lake, where the temperature is forecast to be 10 C on Christmas Day.

Instead of that warm weather moving down from the middle of the interior, a weather system is expected to head toward us from Oregon where cold temperatures are being created now, but  it’s a bit of a toss-up which is likely to win out.

Now, if you’re planning to travel to the coast prior to Christmas, Lundquist advises better road conditions are expected Friday than Saturday, so if you can get away early, do so.

The probability of a white Christmas in Kelowna has actually dropped in recent years. During the period of 1964 to 1982, the probability of snow was 74 per cent on Dec. 25, while from 1991 to 2009, it was 42 per cent.

Mind you, those figures are based on temperatures at the Kelowna Airport, which is in a frost pocket. If you are on the waterfront, your chance is closer to 33 per cent, while up at Joe Rich, it’s closer to 100 per cent.

That tells you that average Christmas temperatures in Kelowna are pretty close to freezing rather than being well above or well below freezing.


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