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Climo chances of a white Christmas

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We used to have a thread like this on eastern but since eastern is long gone, I figured I would update the thread.

We've been on a pretty ugly streak for white Christmases recently after a prolific one in the 2000s. Anyways, here are some stations for New England...I did some reliable coops too. For first order stations, I only did the current airport locations as most of them went into commission in the 1930s/1940s, so it gives a good sample back that far. For some of them, we no longer have snow depth data, but I can go on memory for those pretty easily (I.E., 2007 or 2010 was white for ORH/BOS)

 

The percent chance of a White Christmas going only by climo:

 

BOS: 25%

ORH: 61%

BDL: 42%

BDR: 21%

PVD: 36%

Reading, MA coop: 54%

Ashburnham, MA coop: 70%

Hingham, MA coop: 41%

North Foster, RI coop: 55%

PWM: 62%

CON: 69%

BTV: 73%

CAR: 92%

BGR: 71%

 

 

I found the discrepancy between BOS and Hingham coop interesting...pretty funny actually. Hingham is south of BOS and still pretty damned close to the water, but literally not being out in the harbor makes a pretty big difference in December. Probably a much better representation of the city of Boston than Logan is for chances of a White Christmas. Though I should point out that records at Hingham start in 1960, so it doesn't include that putrid period during the 1940s and early 1950s that is baked into the record at BOS...so if you accounted for that, Hingham is prob closer to about 36-37%...but still significantly higher than Logan airport.

 

 

Feel free to add some in here if there are some reliable coops new you. I know there are plenty more, but didn't have time to sift through all of them.

 

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The local co-op (Farmington) has records back thru 1893 but depth records only since 1940, and until 1966-67 those records are intermittent, though one can interpolate between data points based on temps/precip.  Using all 77 years, the 12/25 proportion with 1"+ is 83% (64-of-77) with 34% (26-of-77) having 10"+.   Tallest pack came in 1970, also their snowiest December, with 44", and no other year exceeded 26".  Poorest decade was the 1990s (no surprise) with 6, while the 60s and 80s scored possibles.   The current decade is running 6-of-7, but the 12" in 2013 is the sole double-digit.  If not exceeded, that would be the lowest max depth for any (calendar) decade.

(I'm 16-of-19 at home, one more than Farmington because I had 2" on 12/25/1998.)

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Boy since moving here in 2004 I think it’s been less than 5 seasons meeting that threshold....from memory....

2005

2008

2012?

But that’s it man

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16 hours ago, ORH_wxman said:

We used to have a thread like this on eastern but since eastern is long gone, I figured I would update the thread.

We've been on a pretty ugly streak for white Christmases recently after a prolific one in the 2000s. Anyways, here are some stations for New England...I did some reliable coops too. For first order stations, I only did the current airport locations as most of them went into commission in the 1930s/1940s, so it gives a good sample back that far. For some of them, we no longer have snow depth data, but I can go on memory for those pretty easily (I.E., 2007 or 2010 was white for ORH/BOS)

 

The percent chance of a White Christmas going only by climo:

 

BOS: 25%

ORH: 61%

BDL: 42%

BDR: 21%

PVD: 36%

Reading, MA coop: 54%

Ashburnham, MA coop: 70%

Hingham, MA coop: 41%

North Foster, RI coop: 55%

PWM: 62%

CON: 69%

BTV: 73%

CAR: 92%

BGR: 71%

 

 

I found the discrepancy between BOS and Hingham coop interesting...pretty funny actually. Hingham is south of BOS and still pretty damned close to the water, but literally not being out in the harbor makes a pretty big difference in December. Probably a much better representation of the city of Boston than Logan is for chances of a White Christmas. Though I should point out that records at Hingham start in 1960, so it doesn't include that putrid period during the 1940s and early 1950s that is baked into the record at BOS...so if you accounted for that, Hingham is prob closer to about 36-37%...but still significantly higher than Logan airport.

 

 

Feel free to add some in here if there are some reliable coops new you. I know there are plenty more, but didn't have time to sift through all of them.

 

That's funny you point that out. I was going to bring that up because there were a couple of years where I sort of scratched my head on that. But, that is Bob Skilling who basically ran the Blue Hill Observatory....so he's about as good as it gets. 

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2 hours ago, CoastalWx said:

That's funny you point that out. I was going to bring that up because there were a couple of years where I sort of scratched my head on that. But, that is Bob Skilling who basically ran the Blue Hill Observatory....so he's about as good as it gets. 

 

The discrepancy between BOS and PVD is kind of telling too...there's no way in reality there is a 10% better chance in Providence. But Logan airport is really exposed and on the water...PVD is exposed too but not nearly as bad. So BOS prob had a lot of "traces" reported on the ground when anyone 4 blocks inland had a 2 or 3 inch glacier.

19 hours ago, mreaves said:

Here is a map from NCDC and a link to the article https://www.climate.gov/news-features/featured-images/are-you-dreaming-white-christmas 

 

Yeah that's a really cool interactive map. It is too bad though that they only use 1981-2010 because there is a slew of missing snow depth data during that 30 year period. Based on their numbers, they think that ORH has a 43% chance of a white Christmas. Their data misses white Christmases in 1995, 1997, 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010.

It isn't entirely clear to me how they come up with that 43% anyway...there's only 14 years (1981-1994) in the 1981-2010 period that had valid snow depth data and 8 of them had a white Christmas. There is technically "0" listed as snow depth in 2004, 2005, and 2006 instead of "M" for missing....though clearly 2005 is wrong as the depth was about 7-8 inches in reality. Not sure how they got those zeros in there instead of "M" since ORH had not reported snow depth since 1994-1995.

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I would give anything to rip a KU beginning late xmas eve afternoon; escalating as the sun set, the evening aged and friends/family shared time. Festivities periodically interrupted with a rush of wind that momentarily seizes attention. The the storm rages at peak intensity from roughly mid night through noon on xmas. Light snows linger as snow remains caked on screens and trees, and finally the travel ban is lifted around dusk, allowing for the captive participants of protracted holiday gatherings to disburse out into the night amid the glow of street lights and amassed holiday displays. No need to fret, though.....now that the family is gone, and the significant other has passed out after being overly medicated with egg nog, we can snuggle in bed and view the model porn on display for New Years eve-

Holidays 2017, baby.

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16 minutes ago, 40/70 Benchmark said:

I would give anything to rip a KU beginning late xmas eve afternoon; escalating as the sun set, the evening aged and friends/family shared time. Festivities periodically interrupted with a rush of wind that momentarily seizes attention. The the storm rages at peak intensity from roughly mid night through noon on xmas. Light snows linger as snow remains caked on screens and trees, and finally the travel ban is lifted around dusk, allowing for the captive participants of protracted holiday gatherings to disburse out into the night amid the glow of street lights and amassed holiday displays. No need to fret, though.....now that the family is gone, and the significant other has passed out after being overly medicated with egg nog, we can snuggle in bed and view the model porn on display for New Years eve-

Holidays 2017, baby.

First passage of "Santa Awakening"?

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3 minutes ago, Isotherm said:

@ORH_wxman - are T amounts typically included for the white Christmas calculation? Doing a couple COOPs around here.

No, the typical definition is 1" or more OTG.

 

I've seen trace used occasionally, but a trace can potentially just mean a few patches so most of the articles that keep tabs on this stuff (including ones by NOAA and my numbers above) use 1" or more of depth.

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Ok, in central NJ, the numbers were as follows:

Freehold/Marlboro COOP; period of record 1959-2016.

12/57 years with 1" or greater snow depth = 21% 

Not surprised we're identical to BDR's percentage, given both of our average snowfalls are near 30" (the 30-year running here has pushed to a little over 31" actually).

The 1960s had a 50% success rate for white Christmas's - obviously a great decade with plenty of -NAO.

1959 = 4"

1961 = 6"

1962 = 1"

1963 = 5"

1966 = 6"

1969 = 4"

1975 = 3"

1980 = 1"

1983 = 1"

1995 = 5"

1998 = 2"

2009 = 7"

 

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I'll put my weenie wishcast goggles on and hope we get it going soon.  My cousin and her husband are coming form England for the holidays and more specifically for snow.  I told her that she would have a better shot if she came in February but she is hoping for a white Christmas.  I know the odds are in our favor to have a least a covering in most years but the last several have featured that cover being eaten away by our seemingly annual Grinch storm.  I'm picking them up at Logan on the 22nd and would love to drive them up in a snowstorm (once I clear Boston that is)

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5 hours ago, 40/70 Benchmark said:

I would give anything to rip a KU beginning late xmas eve afternoon; escalating as the sun set, the evening aged and friends/family shared time. Festivities periodically interrupted with a rush of wind that momentarily seizes attention. The the storm rages at peak intensity from roughly mid night through noon on xmas. Light snows linger as snow remains caked on screens and trees, and finally the travel ban is lifted around dusk, allowing for the captive participants of protracted holiday gatherings to disburse out into the night amid the glow of street lights and amassed holiday displays. No need to fret, though.....now that the family is gone, and the significant other has passed out after being overly medicated with egg nog, we can snuggle in bed and view the model porn on display for New Years eve-

Holidays 2017, baby.

That's pretty much Christmas Day 2003 for me near ALB.  Except it started Christmas morning and peaked that evening with up to 5"/hr rates swinging through.  Still remember driving the grandparents home with somewhere between 18-24" new and no one on the roads at all.  You couldn't stop for traffic lights because you wouldn't get started again, needed to keep momentum.

Then it happened again less than 10 days later on Jan 3-4.  

50" in 10 days during that holiday period.  Doubt I get that lucky again.

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3 hours ago, powderfreak said:

That's pretty much Christmas Day 2003 for me near ALB.  Except it started Christmas morning and peaked that evening with up to 5"/hr rates swinging through.  Still remember driving the grandparents home with somewhere between 18-24" new and no one on the roads at all.  You couldn't stop for traffic lights because you wouldn't get started again, needed to keep momentum.

Then it happened again less than 10 days later on Jan 3-4.  

50" in 10 days during that holiday period.  Doubt I get that lucky again.

Xmas 2002....not 2003

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5 hours ago, mreaves said:

I'll put my weenie wishcast goggles on and hope we get it going soon.  My cousin and her husband are coming form England for the holidays and more specifically for snow.  I told her that she would have a better shot if she came in February but she is hoping for a white Christmas.  I know the odds are in our favor to have a least a covering in most years but the last several have featured that cover being eaten away by our seemingly annual Grinch storm.  I'm picking them up at Logan on the 22nd and would love to drive them up in a snowstorm (once I clear Boston that is)

MPV has a 88% chance of a white Christmas at the airport. Though they stopped keeping snow depth in 1996. But it still had a solid 48 year period to sample from.

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For SNE .. chances have exponentially gone down as of this morning with a mild day, no snow modeled thru day 7 , and what is now modeled on ensembles as a cutter right before Xmas. Only hope might be front end stuff ahead of that one. Let’s hope the look changes, because right now it ain’t pretty 

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