NORAD Santa tracker 2022 live: Track St. Nick as he delivers presents around the world this Christmas Eve

Rest assured, kids of all ages, Santa Claus is coming on Christmas Eve.

This is news of the joint US-Canadian military operation that has followed Jolly Old St. Nicholas on its global mission for 67 years and has reassured us all – first via landline and more recently via iPhone, Android, OnStar, Facebook, YouTube and more – that he’s traveling with a sled full of toys and a welcome helping of joy.

The Colorado-based North American Aerospace Defense Command, in its own hugely popular tradition, is providing real-time updates on Santa’s progress on December 24 from 4:00 am to midnight MST. With NORAD’s Santa Tracker, families can watch Santa in 3D as he traverses the South Pacific, Asia, Africa, Europe and the Americas.

MORE: NORAD’s Santa Tracker started by accident, now it’s a Christmas tradition

From the depths of NORAD headquarters, dozens of volunteers direct a relentless wave of calls to 1-877-HI-NORAD (1-877-446-6723). She and other volunteers answer questions like “When is he coming to my house? What cookies does he like?” said program manager and NORAD spokesman Preston Schlachter.

wanna see it

Watch live in media player above or visit #NORADTracksSanta and @NoradSanta on Twitter, or use the related apps. You can also email for the latest information.

The origins of NORAD’s Santa tracking

As with any good Christmas story, the origin of the program has been told for generations.

In 1955, Air Force Col. Harry Shoup — the commander on duty one night at NORAD’s predecessor, the Continental Air Defense Command — answered a call from a child who was thoughtfully dialing a number misprinted in a newspaper ad she was calling at Santa Claus.

Shoup “answered the call, first thinking it was a prank, but then realizing what had happened, assuring the kid it was Santa, and starting the tradition,” said Schlachter.

NORAD’s mission is to monitor the skies over North America for potential threats. Operation Santa begins early on Christmas Eve when a group of radar stations in northern Canada and Alaska pick up an infrared signature emanating from Rudolph’s nose. NORAD’s array of geostationary satellites over the Earth will monitor the voyage.

It’s all being shown on large, “unclassified” screens in a festively decorated command post at Peterson Space Force Base in Colorado Springs. Masked volunteers sit at tables decked out with phones, garlands, miniature Christmas trees, lots of caffeinated candy and coffee — and hand sanitizer.

“We Have the Watch” is the motto of NORAD’s military mission.

And when it comes to Santa, NORAD adds:

“Santa Claus is in charge. We just go after him.”


Associated Press journalist Terry Chea in San Francisco contributed to this report.

Copyright © 2022 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved. NORAD Santa tracker 2022 live: Track St. Nick as he delivers presents around the world this Christmas Eve

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