In Tucson, walking in a winter wonderland means donning a light jacket — at least in the morning and after sunset.
The first day of winter — and shortest day of the year in the northern hemisphere — brought us a high temperature of 71 degrees, according to the National Weather Service in Tucson.
At the same time, most of the rest of the country topped out at 60 degrees. Large swaths of the western U.S. hardly rose above 40 degrees.
The Old Pueblo, on the other hand, has recorded unusually warm weather this December. Friday’s high was 7 degrees above the norm and this month’s average temperature so far is about 2½ degrees hotter than usual.
But temperatures will begin to slowly drop starting Saturday.
Christmas Eve is expected to reach 70 degrees.
And Santa Claus will usher in even cooler weather, and possibly rain, as well as closer-to-normal temperatures.
On Christmas Day, the high in Tucson is expected to be about 66 degrees and breezy. And on Dec. 26 and 27, the high will hover around 55 degrees.
“That’s well below normal,” said Emily Carpenter, meteorologist at NWS Tucson, “almost a 20 degree swing from this week to next.”
Valley rain and mountain snow are predicted for Tuesday night and Wednesday morning according to NWS Tucson.
Meanwhile, on Saturday, the sky will host a full moon as the Ursids meteor shower peaks.
The full moon will likely outshine many faint meteorites as they enter the atmosphere, but if you’re under dark skies you might catch a different type of holiday lights.