If you’re dreaming of a White Christmas, you could be in luck according to a new report.
We always knew that Donegal was the coolest place, and this Christmas we could be a winter wonderland too.
Amid the cold snap, PR Agency Legacy Communications gathered weather data for each county over the past ten years and spoke to weather experts to predict the counties most likely to see some snow this December 25th.
The counties with the highest likelihood of snow this December 25th, with Donegal and Tyrone tied for the top spot (both coming out with a likelihood of 60%), meanwhile, Westmeath came in third with 57.14%, followed by Fermanagh at 50% and Clare, Laois, Longford, Offaly, Roscommon, and Wexford all making the top ten at 42.85%.
Legacy used TimeAndDate.com and Met Eireann to gather extensive data on weather conditions for each county over the past ten years to figure out which counties were most likely to see snow. This likelihood was calculated by finding the amount of Christmases that each county had hit freezing point (the temperature at which snowfall can fall and stick to the ground) while also experiencing precipitation.
Interestingly, the data also found that temperatures decreased once again over the last two years with precipitation going up last year, meaning there could be an indication that we won’t just be dreaming of a white Christmas this year after all, especially given the cold snap we have already been seeing throughout the country.
Alan O’Reilly of Carlow Weather said: “Generally if you’re asking me if somebody was looking to take a bet on which county for a White Christmas you’d be looking at Eastern counties or Northern counties so Donegal or somewhere around Dublin. Dublin itself may be tricky…so Kildare, or Wicklow. If I was picking my Christmas county (for possible snow) It would probably be Donegal or Wicklow.”
The weather expert also added that Ireland may be “long overdue” for a White Christmas this year.
“It’s really hard to forecast the past two weeks. The weather models show the first two weeks of December look cold, there may be some mild brief spells but it does look cold,” he said.
“When you look towards Christmas day then, people always talk about a White Christmas, it’s very very difficult to forecast that. We haven’t had a White Christmas since 2010, statistically, we would have had one every six years, so we are long overdue for a White Christmas. That doesn’t mean that we are going to see one but it does mean with the cold in December and maybe the chances are that we have a higher chance this year of a White Christmas if that cold can hang around.”
O’Reilly continued: “We have an unusual setup where our weather is not coming from the West where it did for most of November and most of Autumn when we got a lot of rainfall, and it was very mild.
“Our weather is coming from the North, which is going to draw down an Arctic airmass, so temperatures way below normal throughout the week and into the weekend and early next week.
“Forecasting snow in Ireland is notoriously difficult. It’s probably the hardest thing any weather forecaster in Ireland can do. One, because you need a very unique set of circumstances for snow in Ireland, you need temperatures down to below 0 really or at least below 2 degrees, but you also need moisture. Very often we would hear “it’s too cold to snow” when we were growing up – that’s because often when we do get the cold weather it’s dry weather, so we don’t get the precipitation that we need for snow.”
“That’s kind of the same this week, we have some snow showers around but it’s very difficult to say where they will hit and it all depends on the wind direction,” Alan added.
“Next week, we have the potential for a storm in the Atlantic to come up and meet that cold air, now this situation is impossible to forecast far in advance, even 24 hours it can be very difficult…it could meet the cold and bring snow for a time.
“Just about anywhere in the country could see snow over the next seven to ten days but unfortunately it’s really tricky trying to forecast snow.
“Ice is probably going to be the biggest issue that we are going to see.”