Sad to Say, White Christmas Unlikely in 2016 — Third in a Row

Sad to Say, White Christmas Unlikely in 2016 — Third in a Row

First Snow 2015 A

Not gonna happen in 2016.

Dreaming about a white Christmas in Kane County this year?

As they might say out East, “fuggedaboudit.”

For the third year in a row, we’re likely to have 0.0 inches of snowfall on Christmas Day.

The forecast as of Thursday (Dec. 22, 2016) says there’s a chance of drizzle or freezing drizzle before 10 a.m., then a chance of drizzle between 10 a.m. and noon, then a chance of rain after noon. There will be areas of fog. Otherwise, it will be cloudy, with a high near 42.

This forecast is specifically for Kane County, IL, whose center is Latitude 41.9°N, Longitude 88.25°W, Elevation 758 feet, according to the National Weather Service-Chicago under a search for “Kane County, IL.”

Looking back at the past 144 years (which includes just 131 years of recorded data), we see that most Kane County Christmases really are white more often than not — but “not” for the past two years. According to the NWS-C, we have a white Christmas about 54 percent of the time. In fact, 71 of the 131 years have had measured snowfall.

Unfortunately, about 11 percent of our Christmas precipitation is rain rather than snow. We’ve had precip in 89 of 144 Christmases. Since 71 of those had measured snowfall, that leaves 18 of 144 with rain. (Although that might also be freezing rain or, I guess, hail. The NWS isn’t specific on that score.)

You can see these fun facts presented in the NWS-C chart below, but the warmest was 64 degrees in 1982, the coldest was minus 17 degrees in 1983 (what a difference a year makes) and the snowiest was 5.1 inches in 1950.

Sorry that we’re not likely to have a white Christmas in 2016, but as they say, “If you don’t like the weather in Chicago, wait 5 minutes.”

Christmas Weather for Chicago

  • Normal High and Low Temperature for Christmas:  32 and 18 degrees
  • Warmest Christmas: 64 degrees in 1982
  • Coldest  Temperature on Christmas: -17 degrees in 1983
  • Coolest Christmas Daytime Temperature: -5 degrees in 1983
  • Warmest Christmas Nighttime Low Temperature: 46 degrees in 1936
  • Wettest Christmas: 0.50 inches in 1909 and 1950
  • Frequency of Rainfall Christmas: 
    89 of 144 years (62%) Christmas’ measured precipitation
  • Snowiest Christmas: 5.1 inches in 1950
  • Frequency of Snowfall on Christmas: 
    71 of 131 years (55%) Christmas’ measured snowfall

Christmas High Temperatures


Christmas Low Temperatures

Additional Christmas Climate Data

SOURCE: National Weather Service-Chicago