The odds of a White Christmas are fairly small (around 10% in Southeast Missouri). That doesn't stop the weather forecasters, however, from teasing us with a chance of snow in the forecast -- a chance that usually turns into sunshine with unseasonable warmth when the big day arrives.
This year is no different, but the forecast introduces a new kind of wrinkle: sleet. Here's the official forecast for Cape Girardeau:
CHRISTMAS DAY: MOSTLY CLOUDY WITH A 30 PERCENT CHANCE OF RAIN AND SLEET. HIGHS IN THE MID 40S.
TUESDAY NIGHT: CLOUDY. A CHANCE OF SNOW SLEET AND RAIN IN THE EVENING...THEN A CHANCE OF SNOW AFTER MIDNIGHT. LOWS AROUND 30. CHANCE OF PRECIPITATION 40 PERCENT.
WEDNESDAY: CLOUDY WITH A 30 PERCENT CHANCE OF SNOW. HIGHS IN THE MID 30S.
I don't think "I'm dreaming of an sleety Christmas" has quite the same ring to it. But we might be stuck with that. Based on the latest
wild guesses computer models projections, the preliminary Dartboard Forecast for Christmas looks like this:
The longer range models are suggesting better chances of snow in the days after Christmas, so perhaps our snow drought will finally come to an end.
But let's get through this week, first
The forecast for tonight and tomorrow is quite ominous, featuring a chance of tornadoes and severe thunderstorms, followed by gusty winds (up to 55 mph) and a drastic drop in temperatures.
We are currently under a Slight Risk of Severe Thunderstorms, complete with a 2% chance of seeing a tornado within 25 miles.
High winds are a bigger threat, with a 15% chance that severe thunderstorm winds will strike within 25 miles.
This doesn't include the chance of damaging winds tomorrow when the cold front arrives. For that, the National Weather Service has issued a Wind Advisory, explaining that "WEST WINDS SUSTAINED AT 20 TO 35 MPH WILL GUST 40 TO 55
MPH AT TIMES."
The gusty winds will continue into tomorrow night. Combined with lows in the lower 20s, we should see some excellent wind chill readings.