Christmas Eve snow ushers in Arctic regime

finger lakes weather forecast christmas eve sunday december 24 2017 white christmas snow map
A quick hitting snow will fall overnight Christmas Eve, freshening the snow for Christmas morning. Christmas itself will be windy as arctic air rushes into the region.

Christmas Eve Snow

The daytime hours of Christmas Eve will be quiet across the Finger Lakes, but snow will start to overspread the area tonight.

A storm system will take shape today across the Ohio Valley before it tracks into Western New York tonight.

Out ahead of this system, skies will remain cloudy much of the day. There is a small break in the clouds that could bring a little late morning sunshine, but any such break will be brief.

finger lakes weather forecast snow accumulation map christmas eve sunday december 24 2017 christmas snow white christmas
Snow amounts Sunday night into Monday morning will be light across the Finger Lakes as dry air wraps into the storm system, reducing snow amounts. Click image to enlarge.

Temperatures will not move much today with upper 20s this morning becoming low 30s this afternoon.

Snow will start to move in from southwest to northeast this evening, especially after 9 p.m.

The snow will fall steadily for a couple of hours at a moderate rate. However, with the center of the low tracking over Lake Erie and Western New York, a wedge of dry air should work into the Finger Lakes, causing the snow to taper off or even mostly end before sunrise Christmas morning.

For this reason, only an inch or two is expected within much of the Finger Lakes with slightly higher amounts just outside of the region.

On and off flurries and squalls will continue through Christmas morning before the event transitions to lake effect for Monday afternoon.

Arctic Air Arrives

Temperatures Christmas morning will start out around 30 degrees after little change in temperature overnight.

However, strong northwest winds behind the storm system will usher in a prolonged period of arctic cold.

Throughout the day on Monday, temperatures will slowly retreat back into the mid 20s by the afternoon.

Winds will gust between 40-50 mph, not only causing areas of blowing snow but sending wind chills into the single digits.

Lake effect snow will develop quickly by midday Monday. While the Lake Ontario snow will be well north of the area across the Tug Hill, squalls from Lake Erie may make their way into the Finger Lakes, adding another inch or two for some areas Monday afternoon and evening.

The lake effect will push south some on Tuesday, but not far enough south for the Lake Ontario band to make it into the Finger Lakes. Just a couple stray snow showers in the Finger Lakes are expected as a result.

Temperatures will continue to tumble, with highs Tuesday around 20 degrees. Wednesday will only top out in the low and mid teens, with widespread low teens for highs by Thursday.

Some lake snows from Lake Ontario may move into the Finger Lakes by later Wednesday and Thursday with mostly light accumulations.

This arctic air is expected to remain in place through the remainder of 2017. In fact, temperatures may not even climb back above 20 degrees until well into the new year.

Wishing you and your family a very Merry Christmas! Stay warm and safe.



Follow Meteorologist Drew Montreuil:
Meteorologist Drew Montreuil has been forecasting the weather in the Finger Lakes region since 2006 and has degrees in meteorology from SUNY Oswego (B.S. with Honors) and Cornell (M.S.). Drew and his wife have four young boys. When not working or playing with the boys, he is probably out for a run through the countryside.

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