Is it Possible to Snow in West Palm Beach?


When I first got the assignment to find out if snow was possible here in West Palm Beach, I was
sure I already knew the answer. There’s no way it could snow here in South Florida, right? I went
straight to the best source I could find and asked our local NBC News Chief Meteorologist,
Steve Weagle, at News Channel 5. He said not only is it a real possibility, but it’s already
happened! Back on January 19, 1977, people in West Palm Beach walked outside to a winter
wonderland with palm trees dusted with snow. I asked Mr. Weagle what causes snow to fall and
he said, “Cold Arctic air needs to arrive behind a cold front. Then an onshore Northeast wind
would be needed to bring in enough moisture to produce snow.” Those factors were in play back
in 1977, which created a white Christmas for South Floridians.
It was very cold here in December over winter break. I asked Mr. Weagle how close we got to
having snow this year and he said, “It never got below 40 degrees in December. You need
temperatures below freezing.” So while it is a possibility to get snow here in West Palm Beach,
it’s only happened once in the last 46 years, so I’d wait on buying those skis.