Baltimore, Maryland Moved Into Top 25 Big City Snow Contest
Well hello all, are ya’s missing the snow yet? No need to get nervous yet and as far as I know none of the big cities have received any measurable snow for the new 2016-2017 snow season. I just wanted to share an adjustment that I came across from the NWS that lowered the totals for Newark, New Jersey’s snow totals dropping them out of the Top 25. Sorry Newark.
National Weather Service Correct Newark, New Jersy’s Snow Totals
I just wanted to give everyone a heads up that I did a double check on all of the snow stats for the 2015-2016 snow season and there were a few adjustments from The National Weather Service. The only one that made a difference in the line-up was that Newark, New Jersy had their snow totals adjusted downward which dropped Newark out of the Top 25 snowiest cities in the US.
That moved Baltimore, Maryland which was in 26th place into the Top 25 snowiest Big city contest for the 2015-2016 season at number 25 on the snow mountain. So Congrats to Baltimore for making it into the Top 25
When I wrapped up the Golden Snow Globe contest back in May Newark, New Jersey was reporting 3.4 inches of snowfall according to the National Weather Service. When I just did a final check for all of the cities snowfall totals the NWS was reporting only 32.8 inches of snow for last season. Unfortunately for Newark, with the National Weather Service melting away 3.6 inches off the totals, that was enough to drop Newark down to the 26th spot on the Golden Snow Globe snow mountain.
Snowvember, One Year Anniversary of Epic Snow in Buffalo – Surrounding Area
It all started one year ago, an epic snow event that hit parts of the Buffalo area and other surrounding Western New York cities. Below is a great look back that was sent to me by Richard Hulburd who lives in Hamburg, New York.
Richard sent me what it was like to be in the thick of the snow storm. He also sent some great information including the Buffalo National Weather Synopsis of the storm. Richard put together a great video that plays out the Snowvember snowstorm which includes some really cool pictures that he gathered from different sources as the snow was falling. A BIG Thanks Richard for taking the time. Everything below was put together by Richard Hulburd from Hamburg, NY.
November 2014 Lake Effect Snow Storm Video, Buffalo New York
Richard’s Story Lake Effect Snow Storm Buffalo, Hamburg, NY
I drove home from training right by the Airport on the 17th and on the way home the snow from the low-pressure system was just ended. The total from that storm was around an inch. After I got home the band really started to get going. I went to the gym and on the way home the roads were already getting bad. I always go lake effect chasing so decided to attempt to go out in it and see how strong the band was and to visit the Weather Channel who were in the town of Hamburg about 2 1/2 miles away. I got about a mile and decided to turn around. I have driven in some heavy snow, but this was something else. I could not see anything at all, literally… Between 9 and 1 am I received 18 inches of snow. The snow continued overnight as I went on several walks outside in the heart of the band.
The following day the band continued producing rates of 3-5 inches an hour on average. The total from round 1 at my location was 50″. Round 2 was not as intense as round one but still very strong. I went for several walks around Hamburg and posted videos on my Youtube channel for the entire duration of the event. I was in contact with several meteorologists’ from NBC, CNN, and The Weather Channel that used my Youtube videos to show others how crazy this event was. During round 2 I was able to go on the I90 New York State Thruway and walked down the middle of it. It was so awesome! It was a surreal scene with just the snow banks, snowfall rates, and the calmness that I felt as I walked there alone. It is something I will never forget!
As we walked around during the course of the event the people we met were in such good spirits despite what was going on. We saw loads of people walking back with beer and food and the store shelves were completely empty.
Towards the end of the event, I received some staggering snowfall rates of up to 6-7″ per hour. In total received 38.5″ from round 2 for a 3 day total of 88.5″ for the event. It was very difficult to keep accurate totals for this event, but I was in a prime location for the heaviest totals. Definitely an event that i will never forget and tell my grandkids about.
First Event November 17-18th 2014
The epic November 17-19th 2014 lake effect event will be remembered as one of the most significant winter events in Buffalo’s snowy history. Over 5 feet of snow fell over areas just east of Buffalo, with mere inches a few miles away to the north. There were 13 fatalities with this storm, hundreds of major roof collapses and structural failures, 1000s of stranded motorists, and scattered food and gas shortages due to impassable roads. Numerous trees also gave way due to the weight of the snow, causing isolated power outages. While this storm was impressive on its own, a second lake effect event on Nov-19-20 dropped another 1-4 feet of snow over nearly the same area and compounded rescue and recovery efforts. Storm totals from the two storms peaked at nearly 7 feet, with many areas buried under 3-4 feet of dense snowpack by the end of the event.
The storm began Monday around 6 PM evening (Nov 17) as a band of snow developed over the Buffalo Southtowns and quickly moved into the Northtowns with thunder and lightning. However, the band settled south fairly quickly…and by 9 PM the band had moved mostly just south of the city and airport and locked in place as the 15-20 mile wide band centered on a line from Lackawanna and Hamburg ENE across West Seneca, Lancaster, and Alden.
The northern edge of the lake effect band was so striking that many described it as a wall of snow. Snow rates on the northern edge easily exceeded 3 inches per hour with some snow rates near 6 inches per hour. By sunrise, some areas had already exceeded 3 feet of snow. This occurred in under 12 hours. Meanwhile, the southern edge of the band was located along the Lake Erie shoreline in Chautauqua County to near the Southtowns, including Orchard Park, East Aurora, and east into Wyoming county including Attica where about a foot of snow had fallen by sunrise. Travel across the Southtowns was nearly impossible with most roads unplowed as plows, at least those that weren’t stuck, focused a few main roadways needed for emergency vehicles. The Thruway was was shut down from the PA border to Rochester, and other routes, including 190, 290, and 400 were also shut down.
During Tuesday, November 18, the snow band didn’t budge, and by nightfall snow amounts from Lancaster to Southern Cheektowaga east to Alden had accumulated in excess of 4 to 5 feet by the end of the day. The wall of snow was still quite apparent with blue skies to the north and zero visibility on the other side. On Transit Road, there were only a few inches on the ground at Genesee Street, but several feet of snow at Walden Avenue less than 2 miles to the south. Winds gusted to 35 mph…and briefly gusted higher along the edges of the band…but in general winds created sub-blizzard conditions. There were still whiteout conditions however as snow continued to fall in excess of 3 inches per hour.
The band began to waver a little to the south Tuesday night…but overall continued in a slightly weaker state over the southtowns. Finally, the band let up as it drifted to the north and weakened rapidly Wednesday morning.
East of Lake Ontario, a lake band developed south of Watertown Monday night, then drifted north across the city and ENE to Harrisville. This band produced stronger winds than its Lake Erie counterpart, with gusts mostly in the 40-50 mph range with a peak gust to 55 mph at Watertown, producing blizzard conditions at times. By Tuesday night the band settled south over the Tug Hill Plateau, then quickly moved north Wednesday morning. Storm totals were highly variable, with snow amounts generally ranging between 1-2 feet in the hardest hit areas.
A very favorable climatological pattern for heavy lake effect snow was in place over the lower Great Lakes Wednesday and Thursday, Nov 19 and 20, as a deep closed H5 low was centered near the Michigan Straits while anomalously cold air was over the upper Ohio Valley and Mid West. At the surface, low pressure over the Upper Great Lakes Wednesday afternoon tracked across Southern Ontario to the Ottawa Valley by Thursday morning… then to the St Lawrence Valley by Thursday evening. This synoptic pattern circulated H85 temps of -14c across the lower Great Lakes to produce moderate to extreme instability over the relatively mild lake waters. The building instability was accompanied by a capping inversion that rose from around 7k feet at the start of the event to around 15k feet at its peak. This was all very conducive for the second straight lake effect event in less than 48 hours.
Starting with the activity off Lake Erie
Lake effect snow blossomed over Eastern Lake Erie and Southern Ontario Wednesday evening on a 220 flow. Cloud to ground lightning was noted near Long Point near the onset of the activity. As the cold air deepened and low level winds veered to 240, the lake band pivoted east and aligned itself with Lake Erie, allowing it to take full advantage of heat and moisture fluxes from the full fetch of the lake. The somewhat cellular band intensified into a solid plume of moderate to heavy lake snow, producing more thundersnow (in the Buffalo area) process. In the vicinity of the lightning, dual pol imagery depicted a wealth of graupel around 4k feet (nr -10c), which just happened to be in the heart of the mixed phase portion of the lake cloud. The band temporarily settled south to the Chautauqua County lake shore to the Buffalo Southtown’s to Southern Genesee County by midnight…very close to the where the momentous lake snow storm took place 24 to 48 hours earlier.
During the overnight, the band drifted back north to the Buffalo metropolitan area with enhanced cells producing another round of thunder snow. Unlike the epic event of the previous couple days, this snow band oscillated back and forth for the remainder of the event…drifting south by daybreak across Southern Erie County (about 10 miles south of the heaviest snow from the previous storm) and extending across Wyoming County before arching back to the north to the immediate southern suburbs of Buffalo for a couple hours Thursday afternoon.
The lake band was very well organized from late Wednesday night through much of Thursday, with IR satellite imagery indicating that there were abundant overshooting tops within the bands where some cloud tops (-35C) exceeded the cap by some 5k ft. The intensity of the band was also evident from the 2 to 4 inch per hour snowfall rates. This enabled the event to produce snowfall amounts of up to 4 feet across parts of Southern Erie County and Wyoming County. The moderate to heavy snow extended east across Livingston and Ontario counties as well…with accumulations approaching a foot over northern Livingston County. After the passage of a couple of reinforcing secondary cold fronts late Thursday afternoon and evening, the low level flow veered to the northwest, and this pushed the lake snows into the southern tier where increased shear and a shorter fetch broke the solid plume of snow into multiple bands. Snowfall amounts across the Western Southern Tier generally ranged from 6 to 12 inches with slightly higher amounts over the hilltops.
Off Lake Ontario
As is usually the case, the lake effect snow was 3 to 6 hours later in developing than that off Lake Erie. The band initially started over Kingston and parts of southern Quebec shortly after midnight Wednesday night, then as the 220 flow veered to 240 during the wee hours of the morning, the band shifted south and east across Jefferson County. By daybreak Thursday, twin bands of moderate to heavy snow were found east of Lake Ontario, with one centered over northernmost Jefferson County and the other over the northern slopes of the Tug Hill and northern Lewis County. As the southern band pushed south off the lake during the course of Thursday morning, the northern band drifted south to the northern slopes of the Tug Hill (southern Jefferson County to northern Lewis) where it remained nearly stationary through the course of the afternoon. Unlike the plume of heavy snow off Lake Erie, there was only limited lightning generated from the band off Lake Ontario, and that came over the Tug Hill Plateau. There is a suggestion that this lightning may have had some help from the orographic lift, as there was no lightning with the band when it was north or south of the Tug Hill.
A solid band of heavy lake snow was found over the Tug Hill Thursday evening, then the activity drifted south across Oswego and southernmost Lewis County during the remainder of the night. Snowfall rates of 2 to 4 inches an hour helped to produce an average of a foot to a foot and half of snow within this band leading up to daybreak Friday…at which point the lake effect had weakened and become multi band in nature over Oswego and Northern Cayuga counties. The lake effect remained multi band in nature Southeast of Lake Ontario through midday Friday while continuing to weaken to nuisance lake streamers. Little additional snow accumulations were reported during the daylight hours Friday.
Snow Off Lake Erie
49.0 inches… Wales Center
48.0 inches… Marilla
47.5 inches… East Aurora
40.6 inches… Wyoming
10.7 inches… Buffalo airport
From a climatological perspective, the storm had signs of an unprecedented event early on, with historical analogs and climatological ensembles pointing to a rare if ever seen event over a 30 year climatology. 500 mb temperatures eventually dropped to -42C on the KBUF sounding Tuesday evening. With lake temperatures around 9C, lake induced equilibrium levels exceeded the 500mb level and maxed out near 20000’. Further up in the atmospheric column, the 200mb heights were lower than anything in recent memory. The more traditional 850mb temperature value of -15C was also on the lower edge of the climatological spectrum. From pattern recognition, this was a high confidence event…with “feet” of snow in the forecast over four days in advance. Data from the Saint Louis University CIPS (Cooperative Institute for Precipitation Systems) showed several analogs that matched 24 hour record snow events for Buffalo. Locally generated climatological analogs also showed that this event fit the bill for a significant event. The office had 56 hours lead time on a Lake Effect Watch and 32 hours lead time on a Warning. The office mentioned 3-5 inches per hour in the Warning prior to the start of the event and mentioned 2-3 feet forecast with additional significant amounts with the next event later in the week. Travel was forecast to become nearly impossible.
On a side note, this has happened before. During December 14-18, 1945. The airport measured nearly 37 inches with in excess of 70 inches just 4-6 miles south (Lancaster).
First off as always Thanks to Kyle T and Joseph J. for your donations over the summer. Even though the snowiest US cities site is kind pretty much dead over the summer the your donations helped out paying the hosting bill. Thanks again and I truly appreciate them
I think this is the coldest it’s been in a long time here in the Syracuse area. It’s currently 56 degrees as I type this and unfortunately the next several days aren’t looking a whole lot better Yeah, I’m that type of person that you just hate because I whine when it’s too hot or too cold. I will take this over the 90 degree weather most of the time though.
I just did a full update on all of the snowiest cities in the US with a population of 100,000 or more. Another city is showing a trace of snow this update. Billings, Montana is the latest to see some snowflakes falling. Looking at the snow stats they are currently behind their average snowfall for the season to date which for Billings is 0.2 tenths of an inch of snow. Fort Collins, Colorado is the only other city that I saw that should have some measurable snowfall by now which is only 1 tenth of an inch.
Three cities are now showing a trace of snowfall and keep in mind that even though I have them at the top, a trace doesn’t count as measurable snowfall. So in other words it’s a 51 way tie right now for first place. Ummm, If your glass is half empty then it’s a 51 way tie for last place The 3 cities with a trace are Billings, MT, Sioux Falls, South Dakota and Fort Wayne Indiana which kind of surprises me. I have to admit it is kind of depressing typing about snow. It seems like summer just started a couple of weeks ago. Hopefully this will be a fun winter at the Golden Snow Globe and winter will fly right by…
Warning, Shameless Plug – For those of you that get into Halloween decorating I have you covered. I have a couple of Halloween inflatable blowup sites that are all updated with the newest Halloween Blowups. There are several new inflatables for your yard out this season and a few of them are pretty cool. Click Halloween Inflatables and Blowups to check them out and thanks…
Enjoy what’s left of summer all and hopefully there is plenty of warm weather still to come.
Just got a top 10 update in – I could only go down 10 cities but unless a city not in the top 10 got a lot of snow, Erie, Pa climbs to the top of the snow mountain. Way to go Erie!!!
Just a quick heads up that I currently lost my internet connection until tomorrow, Saturday, which is why no updates recently. Right now I am at my local Library and will try to get at least a top 10 snowiest city update in. I’ll see how long it takes them to kick me off of the computer. Hopefully I can get this done by the time the kids get out of school
I haven’t been able to answer or for that matter get to any of my emails but I will as soon as they come and climb the pole tomorrow to get me going again. I wish I could say it is down because of the tons of snow we are getting here in Syracuse but so far most of the heavy snow is staying to the north of us and they have been getting pounded with feet, not inches of snow up there.
I’m also without the program that I use to do the updates so if I end up messing up the computer programming coding I’ll fix it sometime tomorrow when I’m back online at home. OK, enough for now so I can get to work on the updates.
We have another lead change in the National Snow contest here at the Golden Snow Globe. So far for the 2013 – 2014 season and I’m sure there will be several more to come unless a city gets a huge jump early on. There was quite a bit of shuffling this last update along with a couple of cities falling out of the top 10.
Sioux Falls, SD picked up more than enough snow with over half a foot of snow and almost doubling the snow totals of the next best snowiest city which is Salt Lake City, Utah who moved up from 7th place on the snow board to the second slot. It’s obviously way to early to even think about a winner but it should be a decent contest again this season.
Several more cities picked up some measurable snow since the last update including a couple of the favorites, Syracuse, NY and Anchorage, Alaska. So far Anchorage is the biggest under performing city with just 0.2 inches of snowfall on the season. Normally they have almost a foot of snow by now, 11.5 inches to be exact.
A couple of days ago I was hearing some rumors of a possible Nor’easter developing toward the end of this week but really haven’t heard a whole lot more about that recently so I suppose we will just have to wait and see what happens. Enough for now and I’ll be getting more updates in this season as long as there is snow to report.
Warning, Shameless Plug Ahead – I just updated my outdoor yard inflatables for Christmas section. There are Christmas inflatable blowups from several stores. Just click on the one you like and it will take you to that store. We also have a huge selection of Walmart Christmas inflatables which some of them are sold only online. Don’t forget the Free Shipping from their site to a store near you deal. Click Here For Cool 2013 Christmas Inflatables and Blowups.
The cold air has finally hit quite a few of the states now but it’s still the Colorado cities taking control of the national snow contest. Remember, only cities with a population of 100,000 or more are on the list.
Fort Collins, Colorado jumped ahead of Lakewood to take the top spot in the snowiest city in the US but only by a couple of snowflakes. Being the beginning of the snow season that’s about all that any of the cities are showing right now is just a few flakes here and there. A few things did stand out this last update though. Erie, Pa is now on the snowboard, Anchorage, Alaska still doesn’t have any measurable snow and a lot more cities are showing at least a trace of snow compared to the last update.
Anchorage normally would be leading right about now averaging 9.6 inches for this time in the season. Right now they are only showing a trace and aren’t even in the top 10. Remember they have been the only city since we started keeping stats to dethrone Syracuse, NY as the snowiest US city. I’m still in the process of moving but what will be cool is when I get hooked up and start watching one of my favorite shows, Gold Rush Alaska, I/We already know that they are going to have a lot better start this season and shouldn’t have to move a ton of snow before they start digging for gold
Then there is that pesty Erie, Pa and I say that affectionately toward those of you from Erie Erie made the snow contest fun last season and were one of a couple of cities who came just inches away from taking the glory and bragging rights away from Syracuse, NY, My hometown just in case you didn’t know. Well Erie is on the snowboard now with a few tenths of an inch of snow and as always they are one of the cities that always worry me along with Worcester, Anchorage and a couple others. They should make it fun again for the new 2013 – 2014 snow season.
Another thing that caught my attention was that as of the last update we only had 12 cities showing any measurable snow or at least a trace of snow. This update we have 36 cities with at least a trace or more. I think we may be seeing a lot of lead changes this season and as always the bragging rights to snowiest big city in the US are up for grabs.
Just a heads up that we are going to be dropping a few cities out of the lineup in the next several days. It’s obvious that some of the cities don’t have a chance and we would like to get it down to around 40 – 50 cities. If you want to defend why your city should be listed here then now s the time. I’ve left a few in just because it was interesting to see that cities like Albuquerque, NM do get some snow each season but it’s getting a little too time consuming each update. I think the first 2 cities we need to drop is Worcester, Mass and Erie Joking of course! That said if you know of a city that isn’t listed but gets some decent snow and they are not on here then feel free to let us know. Keep in mind the population needs to be at least 100,000 as of the last census.
OK, enough for now and you all Have a Super Night and as always, “See Snow – Drive Slow” unless on a sled of course
I finally got a full update in and the top 10 snowiest cities shifted around quite a bit. Boston was pushed out of the top 10 by Green Bay, Wi who has been on the move the last few updates. Three cities from New York are in the 1, 2, 3 spots on the snow mountain.
Buffalo managed to move up to third place which is a little bit of a surprise seeing how they are in 4th place over at goldensnowball.com which is a contest between 5 cities in NY. Binghamton, NY holds the #3 spot there with Buffalo in 4th place. Right now it’s Syracuse, Rochester and Buffalo holding the top 3 but other than Syracuse it’s still pretty close between several cities for 2nd place on the mountain. I’m pretty sure that Syracuse has this seasons Golden Snow Globe wrapped up We still have to wait a bit because it snows forever in Colorado. Not that they have a shot but just in case.
I’ll probably only be doing a couple more full updates but will try like I always say to at least get more top 10 snowiest city stats updated than I have been doing.
We just did an update on the top 10 snowiest US cities only. I went back about 30 cities just to make sure. I’ll try and get all of the cities updated sometime today.
Right now one thing is on my mind and that’s the NC DOUBLE A Baby. Brackets to fill out still and this NCAA tournament should be a tough one to pick. I think the reason being I really don’t see any stand out teams that are wayyyy above the rest. No doubt there are a few that may seem to stand out but I think this tourney is going to be known for the tournament of upsets if you can even call it that. More to come and GO SYRACUSE – GO BIG EAST and I’m not talking snow either
Well you called it dead on Joe Joe left a comment that Detroit was on the move and the had enough snow to jump past Chicago and NYC like Joe mentioned. I think what’s even more impressive is that all of the Michigan cities have a pretty good competition going on between them. Just as impressive is that the Michigan cities like Flint, Ann Arbor and Detroit are hanging in there with the big dog Grand Rapids WTG!
Syracuse, NY still holds a commanding lead and no doubt it’s going to take an act of it’s not nice to fool mother nature in order for another city to jump ahead at this point I believe. Is it posible? Sure but it’s getting late in the snow season and it’s getting more unlikely that it will happen. I think after the above average snow season that most of the cities have had the question is does anyone want to really beat them now? Do you want another 50, 60, 100 inches more to beat them Plus Syracuse is under a storm warning right now with another 8 – 12 inches expected today. OK, enough said and check out Stephens Shot in the Dark Forecast below.
I finally got my lazy butt around to doing an update. OK, it wasn’t so much as being lazy as it was to having bronchitis which kicked my butt. Then I had to get caught up on my other work (real job) but now I’m good to go again I think Anyways, sorry about that and I was just as curious as most of you as to how the stats look after 2 weeks of no update. Not a whole lot happened to be honest and I was a little disappointed.
There was a little bit of shuffling in the top 10 but it’s the same snowiest cities in there. None of the top 10 dropped out. What I noticed this update is how widespread the snow was. Other than a handful or two of the cities we have listed almost all of them are over their average snowfall for the season. At least the ones I could find stats for.
Syracuse continues to climb higher on the snow mountain and with winter rounding the corner to the finish line they may reach the peak of the mountain where no other city can catch them. I think we may be talking about at least a few good storms for any of the cities to have a snowballs chance. So in other words, get out there and do a snow dance or two so we can get this contest close
Have a Super Week All!
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