White Christmas expected in most of Canada

Snow falling on street of Montreal during Christmas time. Linda Raymond /Getty Images

A white Christmas is expected for much of Canada this year with the exception of the southern Prairies east of Calgary, extreme southwestern Ontario and most of Nova Scotia.

READ MORE: Winter weather forecast: What Canadians can expect from coast to coast

For the Greater Toronto Area, where a white Christmas occurs less than half the time, snow will begin Thursday evening and last into Friday with the potential for even more snow by Christmas Eve.

Montreal and Ottawa are shoe-ins with a thick snow pack and more of the white stuff on the way in the coming days.

Winnipeg only has trace amounts of snow on the ground by Christmas which is rare for that city.

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Saskatoon still has snow but Regina is bare with little chance of anything significant before the big day.

Calgary got a significant snowstorm this week and that is going nowhere fast with cold air lasting through at least next week.

Vancouver got snow this week and will get more flurries on Christmas Day.

A white Christmas is not guaranteed for the lower mainland but the odds are way higher than the 1 out of 10 chance in any given year.

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Polar vortex

The extreme cold and appearance of the polar vortex is the real story through the holidays.

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Temperatures in the prairies will dip below -30 with wind chills in the -40s.

Ontario and Quebec residents are also at risk for near record cold later next week.

In fact, almost all of Canada will be way below normal between Christmas Day and New Years.



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