White Xmas to elude most Swedes: SMHI

White Xmas to elude most Swedes: SMHI
A Christmas tree in central Stockholm. File photo: Anders Lindgren/Flickr
Southern and central Sweden will miss out on a white Christmas this year, as the Met Office predicts most revellers will wake up to a mottled sky. Northerners, however, can pull out their sleighs and skis for Crimbo.

"Swedish Christmas isn't always as snowy as it is depicted on a classic post card," the poetic meteorologists at SMHI wrote in a statement. "Sweden is a tall country where mild weather and winter chill often oscillate back and forth around Christmas before winter has time to stabilize."

On Tuesday, it said Christmas revellers in central Svealand and southern Götaland would most likely have to do without the white stuff on Christmas Eve. 

"We have to consider it quite certain that Götaland and Svealand won't get snow," SMHI meteorologist Sofia Söderberg told the TT news agency. 

For Christmas to officially be considered "white", there must be at least one centimetre of snow on the ground. Instead, anyone south of Norrland will have to make do with an overcast winter sky, while eastern Svealand and the northern coast could see some rays of sunshine.

The dearth of snow will come as a bit of a let down for anyone who enjoyed the white winters of recent years. 

Last year, the region surrounding Härnösand woke up to 65-centimetre blanket of snow – the thickest cover in over a century. Stockholm also saw its whitest Christmas since 1915, SMHI noted. Going back further, to 2010, Sweden experienced what the old proverb calls a "wolf winter" (vargavinter), and SMHI recorded more than 10 centimetres of snow at all of its measurement stations across the country.

This year, residents of non-coastal Norrland will be able to enjoy a snow-covered Christmas.

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