National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

White Christmas History for Central Alabama


Each year, as Christmas Day approaches, people across Central Alabama begin dreaming of a White Christmas.  However, historical records do not hold much hope for a truly classical White Christmas, that is, snow falling and measurable amounts on the ground on Christmas Day.  There have been a number of occasions where measurable snow actually fell across Central Alabama on Christmas Day, however no measurable snow was recorded at official observing sites.


Probability of a White Christmas

Climatological Probabiliites (long term averages) of a White Christmas

(Click on image for a larger view.)  Source:  National Climatic Data Center


Birmingham area:

  • For Birmingham, where nearly 100 years of weather records exist, there has never been a white Christmas in the classic sense.
  • Perhaps the closest resemblance to a white Christmas in Birmingham, in recent years, was December, 2010.  Flurries (mixed with rain) fell on Christmas day, but snow was not deep enough to measure.  Many locations, away from the downtown and airport areas, did receive measurable amounts of snow.
  • Nine other trace snowfall events occurring in 1961, 1963, 1966, 1980, 1985, 1989, 1990, 1993, and 1995 were reported at the Birmingham International Airport on either December 24th or 25th.
  • Weather records show that 5.5 inches of snow fell at the city office on December 22, 1929.  On December 24th, there was still 2.5 inches of snow on the ground at 7 PM.  However, most of the snow melted Christmas day when the temperature climbed to 51 degrees.


Montgomery area:

  • For Montgomery, there has not been a white Christmas since 1919.  The closest Montgomery has come to a white Christmas was in 1962 when a trace of snow was observed on December 24th.  However, a near miss occurred in 1935 when 1.4 inches of snow fell on December 21-22.


Tuscaloosa area:

  • Tuscaloosa has only reported two trace snowfall events in 1962 and 1985 on Christmas eve and Christmas day.


Anniston area:

  • Christmas day 2010 was a white Christmas for many around the Anniston area. Measurable snow was reported at numerous locations around the Anniston area on Christmas day 2010, although there was no snow recorded at the airport location.
  • Anniston has reported a total of seven trace snowfall events in 1963, 1970, 1985, 1989, 1990, 1993, and 1995 on either December 24th or 25th.


Christmas Day Snowfall 2010


Useful Snow Climate Links: