Nice food, new clothes and pocket money for the children: Chinese often indulge themselves at the Spring Festival. But there is one thing Beijing residents will probably miss this year -- snow.
An analyst studies a meteorological map in Beijing Meteorological Bureau in Beijing, capital of China, Jan. 29, 2011. Beijing breaked a 60-year record for the latest date for its first snowfall of the season on Saturday. Since 1951, the latest record of the first snowfall in Beijing was in 1984, when it arrived on Jan. 29. [Xinhua]
Eighty-three days into winter, Beijing is still waiting for its first snow, making this winter the longest snow-free one on record. (The records date back 60 years, to 1951.)
Snow is unlikely to fall in Beijing within the next 10 days, according to Beijing Meteorological Bureau forecaster Sun Jisong.
"I am pretty sure there won't be any snow for the Spring Festival on Thursday," said Sun.
Beijing residents can expect warmer weather for the festival that is an important occasion for family reunions in China.
On the day, maximum temperatures will be 5 to 7 degrees Celsius, Sun forecasts.
The previous snow-free winter record was set in 1984, when the season's first snow fell on Jan. 29.