It won’t be a white Christmas, but it will be a chilly one, meteorologists say.
Although the past weekend felt more like early spring than winter, National Weather Service meteorologist Leonard Vaughan predicts jackets and scarves might be needed by Wednesday when temperatures dip.
“For Christmas, it looks chilly,” Vaughan said Monday. “Highs will be in the upper 40s and it could get to 50 in some places. It will definitely feel Christmas-y.”
And once again, there are no chances for snow. Augusta has never had a white Christmas, Vaughn said. The closest it got was a trace of sleet in 2004.
There were two years that were close – more than two inches were recorded on Dec. 22, 1935, and a trace was recorded in some areas near Augusta in 2010.
Mostly sunny skies are expected Tuesday through Sunday, with a chance of rain Sunday night. Other than Christmas Day, temperatures should stay in the 50s throughout the week.
The clear skies will be good news to the more than 2.7 million Georgians traveling this year. That’s a small part of the 94.5 million Americans who will travel more than 50 miles during the year-end holiday season defined as Dec. 21 to Jan. 1.
According to AAA, this year is the fifth consecutive year travel volume has increased.
Those who are driving – about 91 percent of all travelers – could expect to see gas prices about the same as they did over the Christmas holidays last year.
According to a Sunday AAA news release, the national average is one cent more, at $3.24 per gallon. Georgia’s average is $3.17.
“Gas prices will remain relatively stable until the new year,” said Jessica Brady, AAA spokeswoman. “The stability may not last long.”
Oil prices recently jumped in reaction to a growing U.S. economy and prices at the pump are expected to rise after the first of the year based on optimistic fuel demand for 2014.