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Climate and Environment

Warm Weather Puts A Bow On The Holiday Season For LA While Much Of The Nation Shivers

A christmas tree decorated with red, gold and silver ornaments sits on the sand behind a row of stumps, against a backdrop of gentle waves and a cloud streaked sky.
Warm temperatures expected for Christmas weekend 2022.
(LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr)
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Southern California will bask in unusually warm weather this Christmas, but a severe cold snap in the rest of the country could put a Krampus on travel plans.

Forecast For L.A.

Temperatures this Saturday and Sunday will be in the 70s and 80s, thanks to a ridge of high pressure hanging over the West Coast gifting us with sunny and clear skies. A warm breeze may be felt in parts of the region with Santa Ana winds. Classic Southern California winter cheer.

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Meteorologist Kristen Stewart from the National Weather Service says the weather is above average but also not uncommon.

“[The weather is] not quite typical. We are actually expecting temperatures about 10 to 15 degrees above normal. So it's quite warm for this time of year.”

The last time Christmas day weather in SoCal was this warm was in 2013.

Feel Like Feeling Good About Living Here?

Conditions On Our Roads

SoCal roads will also feel the heat with an estimated 8.1 million folks hitting the road. The NWS says to expect clear and snow-free highways through the mountains and the Grape Vine. Caltrans reports all four lanes of the Grapevine will be open.

Unfortunately the Grinch makes his appearance in the form of a polar vortex over the Central and Eastern portions of the U.S. A severe cold snap with wind chills below zero is expected to delay and even cancel flights.

If you're traveling by car, AAA recommends a maintenance check of your vehicle and yourself before hitting the road.

  • Get seven good hours of sleep
  • Don’t text while driving
  • Check the tread and inflation of your tires
  • Check your car’s battery
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“During the 11-day travel period from today through January 2nd, AAA will come to the roadside rescue of an estimated 252,000 stranded drivers.”
AAA estimates 9.2 million Southern Californians will be traveling this holiday season.

And what do they say are top destinations for SoCal travelers? Las Vegas, San Diego, and Mexico.

About Travel By Air

The National Weather Service and AAA recommend that air travelers check with their airlines frequently.

Doug Shupe from AAA offers some tips for flying this holiday season:

  • Download your airline’s app to track cancellations and delays
  • Pack medications, snacks, and a change of clothes in your carry-on bag to anticipate flight changes

And don't miss our tips on how to make LAX less of a headache than usual.

What questions do you have about Southern California?

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