Dreaming of a White Christmas? It Might Be Rare by 2050, According to Scientists

published Dec 12, 2019
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Based on the amount of snowfall records the U.S. has seen this fall, we can only assume that this upcoming winter season will provide ample amounts of the fluffy white stuff for folks to build snowmen and (begrudgingly) shovel. Anchorage, Alaska, Denver and Detroit are among the cities that saw record-breaking snowfall in November, and according to Weather.com, the lower 48 kicked off December with the most expansive snow cover in 16 years. 

As the holidays approach, the anticipation of a possible white Christmas will undoubtedly peak because Irving Berlin’s famous tune has plenty of us convinced that snow magically transforms Dec. 25 into the dreamiest day of the year. If the prospect of a snowy holiday appeals to you now, you’ll likely be interested in which cities are likely to have one in the future. That’s where The White Christmas Index comes in. Created by Nestpick.com, the report outlines 40 popular winter tourist destinations in the Northern Hemisphere and the probability that they’ll experience a snowy Christmas in the year 2050.

The findings are based off a climate change research performed by ecologist Jean-Francois Bastin and the average number of snowy days between December 2008-2018. Should you become so enthralled with a white Christmas in the next three decades that you plan on relocating to in order to experience it, just know that the chances of this actually happening are painfully slim, at least according to the research.

Leading the list with the highest prediction of three (!) December snow days are Warsaw, Chicago, St. Petersburg, Munich, Prague, Toronto, Ottawa, and Calgary. Kiev, Helsinki and Oslo had some of the most snow days between December 2008-2018, but their December 2050 forecasts show them taking a huge dip down to a meager two days each.  As Nestpick founder and CEO Omer Kucukdere explains, finding a spot with a white Christmas 30 years from now could present one heck of a challenge.

“For those who remember clearly the excitement of snow leading up to Christmas, it feels that Decembers just aren’t as snowy as they used to be,” said Omer Kucukdere. “While we’re not suggesting that our study is by any means an exhaustive analysis into future weather patterns or scientific climate predication, our simple approach still reveals an overall trend for warmer Decembers in the Northern Hemisphere. For future generations, this means that White Christmases may become something that exists only in Hollywood films and old photos.”