Brighter days are lying ahead as the “shortest day” of the year is here.
(Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images)
The winter solstice marks the point when the North Pole is at its furthest location away from the sun, creating the atmosphere for shorter hours of sunlight. According to Adler Planetarium, the Northern Hemisphere will receive less than nine hours of daylight.
The astronomical event also signals the official start of the winter season. According to the National Weather Service, this year’s winter solstice will occur at 3:48 p.m. CST on Wednesday.
While the solstice and “shortest day” of the year will both occur on Wednesday, the following day is recognized as the first full day of winter.
As if bellowing out its presence, winter will kick off with a heavy storm. Forecast modules expect snow accumulation, fierce winds and bitter temperatures to hit the Chicago area.
A winter storm warning is currently in effect for the area for Thursday. According to the warning, “falling and blowing snow will result in white out conditions with zero visibility at times, making travel extremely difficult, if not impossible.” Welcome to winter!