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Cold but dry weekend on tap; best chance for snow coming after Christmas

December 22, 2018

Friday is the first day of winter, but it’s hard to tell looking around south-central Wisconsin.

There’s no snow to be found, and the chances of having snow for Christmas are slim, forecasters say.

It should be a cloudy, windy and colder day on this shortest day of the year, with a high of 33 and winds gusting up to 30 mph, according to 27 Storm Track meteorologist Guy Brown’s forecast.

We should see some sun on Saturday and Sunday, with highs in the mid-30s.

The National Weather Service said there’s a slight chance for snow and freezing drizzle before midnight Saturday, then a slight chance of snow, but no accumulation is expected.

Christmas Eve on Monday should be mostly sunny with a high near 34.

Brown gives us a little bit of hope for light snow Monday night, then maybe a few afternoon snow showers on Christmas Day on Tuesday, with a high of 33.

The best chance for snow comes Wednesday.

Brown said clouds will thicken, the wind will pick up and snow should develop in the afternoon, continuing at night, the high topping out at 33.

The Weather Service put snow chances at 70 percent Wednesday night, then a mix of rain and snow on Thursday, with a high near 39.

We could see more rain next Friday, with a high of 33.

Thursday’s high of 42 was 13 degrees higher than normal and 20 degrees below the record high of 62 for Dec. 20, set in 1877.

The low of 35 was 21 degrees above normal and 52 degrees above the record low of 17 below for the date, set in 1963.

Light rain added up to 0.12 inches of precipitation at the airport,, bringing the December and meteorological winter (December through February) totals up to 0.81 inches, 0.43 inches below normal.

The record precipitation (rain plus snow converted to liquid) total on Dec. 20 was 1.16 inches in 2012, and it came down as the record 13.3 inches of snow for that date.

Since Jan. 1, Madison has received 49.35 inches of precipitation, 15.37 inches above normal.

Snowfall totals stayed at 1.0 inches for the month and season, 7.8 inches below normal.

Since the start of snow season on July 1, Madison has received 4.4 inches of snow, 8.5 inches below normal.

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