Chance of snowflakes in lowlands on Christmas Day

Dec 19, 2015, 4:01 PM | Updated: Dec 20, 2015, 8:25 pm
Forecasters say the snow level could drop to 500 feet or less on Thursday night into Friday morning...
Forecasters say the snow level could drop to 500 feet or less on Thursday night into Friday morning. (MyNorthwest file photo)
(MyNorthwest file photo)

If you’re dreaming of a white Christmas, you’re in luck. Forecasters say the snow level could drop Thursday night into Friday morning.

A front rolling in early this week will bring rain and mountain snow, according to the National Weather Service in Seattle. A Winter Storm Warning will be in effect from 4 a.m. Monday through 4 a.m. Tuesday in the Cascades of Pierce and Lewis counties. Heavy snow is expected to begin early Monday morning and continue through the night. The Weather Service said the main impact will be high elevation highways, with the snow level around 2,500 feet.

We may see a break from the rain on Wednesday, but another system rolls in that night into Thursday morning, according to the NWS. High temperatures will be in the 40s with lows in the 30s.

Forecasters say a deep upper trough could develop in the area on Thursday evening (Christmas Eve) and the snow level could drop to 500 feet or lower. While Christmas Day is expected to be dry, light snow is possible. A warmer, wetter system is expected to move in on Saturday.

Snow has fallen on Christmas Day only a limited number of times over the last 120 or so years, according to records from downtown Seattle and at Sea-Tac.

They include:

1) 1909 1.8 inches
2) 1915 0.4 inches
3) 1944 0.2 inches
4) 1965 1.0 inches
5) 1990 0.8 inches
6) 2007 0.9 inches
7) 2008 0.4 inches

There has been snowfall on only about 6 percent of Christmas Days over a 123 year record, according to the NWS.

The most recent snowfall on Christmas Day was in 2008 and the region was embedded in an extended cold and snowy weather period that started on Dec. 13 and ran through the end of the year. Some places in Western Washington had between one and two feet of snow on Christmas Day.

Ted Buehner with the National Weather Service contributed to this report.

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Chance of snowflakes in lowlands on Christmas Day