If you’re looking to save a few bucks on your heating bill this winter you may be in luck. Starting Christmas Day temperatures will trending upward as we head toward the New Year. The medium to long range forecasts keep the Southeast in above normal temperatures through March, which overall could help to reduce your heating costs. If we could get some decent rains to help with the drought it would be a big bonus.

Starting Christmas Day we see highs climb to near 60 degrees. The following week headed into New Years Day will bring temperatures well into the 60s to near 70. The record highs that week are in the low to mid 70s so we will close to record warmth, but won’t be breaking any.

Now onto January! Here is the latest outlook for temperatures and precipitation from the Climate Prediction Center for the month of January. As you can see we are projected to be slightly above normal for temperatures…….


and slightly below normal for precipitation.


In fact the news gets even better for the three month period January through March. Our potential for above normal temperatures increases…..


while our prospects for rain falls anywhere between slightly above normal and equal chances.


So hopefully Mother Nature will be kind to us, and give us a break on the heating bill this winter. Remeber this is all subject to change, but at least for now it doesn’t paint us a into a deep freeze.


Weekend Wintry Mix

You may, or may not, have heard of the possibility that some parts of northeast Georgia could see a brief period of a wintry mix early Saturday morning. While this is true, the chances of that happening, as well as the impacts, are quite low. While temperatures will be close to freezing in some spots northeast of a line from Athens to Gainesville to Ellijay, the amount of moisture arriving early Saturday morning will be very limited. There very well could be none at all.

First the set up. I’m sure your aware of the cold air moving across the Upper Midwest and Great Lakes. That cold air will arrive here on Thursday as a cold dome of high pressure expands from the Midwest to East Coast. That area of high pressure will eventually move eastward and reposition itself across the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic setting us up for the classic wedge of cold air near the surface that so often occurs this time of year.


Temperatures across the northeast corner of Georgia will drop to near freezing in a few spots early Saturday morning with the coldest readings being located across Habersham,  Rabun, Towns and Union County. This is where the greatest likelihood of any wintry mix occurring would be. Most locations though in northeast Georgia should remain above freezing lessening the chance of any wintry mix developing. Meanwhile lows will only drop into the upper 30’s to lower 40’s in and around the metro area, and locations west, southwest and south of Atlanta will remain well outside of the wedge with lows only dropping into the mid to upper 40’s. Safe to say that if anything falls from the sky in and around metro Atlanta it would fall as rain.


Last but not least is the amount of moisture. Right now it doesn’t appear that the return of moisture will be that great early Saturday morning with most of the rain holding off to the west. If that is the case then little if anything will be falling early Saturday morning.


Of course all of this could change, but even if we were to get some icing in far northeast Georgia the good news is that by afternoon the temperatures will be in the 50’s melting anything that may have frozen earlier in the day. As the say….Stay tuned!