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These states have the best shot at a white Christmas — with one area already 80% likely to see snow

One particular factor that could see these results shift.

One particular factor that could see these results shift.

Photo Credit: iStock

For many in the United States, waking up on Christmas morning to the sight of a pristine blanket of white snow outside is a dream. 

However, not everyone is likely to get that holiday-card image to really herald the arrival of Christmas Day.

But for folks in the Mountain West, upper Midwest, or northern New England, the chances are much greater. And perhaps traveling to these areas for the holidays can make the season a little more special.

Using data from the Snow Data Assimilation System (SNODAS), Axios created a map detailing the areas most likely to be singing that Irving Berlin classic when they wake up. 

After analyzing historic satellite data, the regions mentioned above have most often seen at least an inch of snowfall come Christmas Day between 2003 and 2022.

Minneapolis is the place to be, though, with an 80% likelihood of snow when looking at previous years. Chicago could work, too, with a 30% historical probability, but those in Atlanta hoping to build snowmen will want to go elsewhere, with the chances being listed as 0%.

Axios pointed out a particular factor that could see these results shift, though. Global heating is reducing the length of snow seasons, meaning there’s a chance we’ll see fewer days like this as the planet continues to heat up.

Moreover, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has suggested that the 2023-24 winter will be milder than previous ones, with the El Niño weather phenomenon and record temperatures seen worldwide during the year signifying a warmer and drier winter than usual.

Indeed, according to the World Meteorological Organization, 2023 is set to be the warmest year on record, with data suggesting temperatures were 2.5 degrees Fahrenheit (1.4 degrees Celsius) higher than the 1850-1900 pre-industrial baseline.

Reducing planet-warming pollution will not only increase the chances of more white Christmases in the future — it will also help to prevent extreme weather events, like flooding, deadly storms, and wildfires, that rising temperatures make more likely. 

So, maybe not embarking on a polluting journey across the country and making the most of Christmas at home is the best way to enjoy the holiday this year — snow or not. 

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