The season of winter is gradually winding down. It is officially spring now, but Mother Nature never runs on a schedule. Based on the long-range pattern, additional snowfall is possible across the Northern Tier and the intermountain West, but the South is definitely out of the woods now until next winter for additional snowfall. We’re going to discuss the winners and losers in terms of snowfall this season and which cities received the jackpot snow totals while other cities were starved of snowfall.
Let’s take a look at the nation as a whole. The most notable area is the Southeast in our opinion because several storms affected the region back in December and January. One of the storms even brought snow to one of the southernmost cities in the US: Brownsville, TX. Brownsville is a city that we typically won’t include in a snowfall map. 0.3 inches may not sound like much but for a city that typically experiences no snow in the winter, that’s significant. Also Jackson and Atlanta received notable snowfall this winter, making them a winner in our minds (unless you don’t like the snow), recording 5.9 inches and 4.7 inches, respectively, which is above average. The Mid-Atlantic had a fairly average winter in terms of snowfall, although the “Washington DC Snow Hole” was presented until just recently in March. Washington, DC struggled to receive any snow throughout the winter, but the most recent storm during the last full week of March allowed for a smaller snowfall deficit. Further north into the Northeast region, most locations received above-average snowfall, including New York City. In the Midwest, snowfall will at around average for most locations. That includes Chicago and Minneapolis, but further south toward Kansas City, it was a sub-par winter. Portions of the intermountain West have had a great winter, especially in the northern Rockies. Bozeman, MT recorded over two times their average snowfall to date. In the Sierra Nevada of California, winter was off to an extremely slow start. It waited until March for substantial snowfall events to occur. Some mountains have recorded over 300 inches so far this season, but even that is still below average.
Now let’s zoom in and focus on the Northeast region. The I-95 corridor has been through a snowy winter overall. Cities like Portland, Boston, New York, and Philadelphia have all received above average snowfall. Back toward the Great Lakes and the interior, snowfall has also been above average. Syracuse and Erie, PA are worth noting because they received above-normal lake-effect snow. In Erie back in late-December, a very significant snow band dropped snow beginning on Christmas Eve, and the lake-effect machine persisted for a full six days, dropping a total of 83.8 inches of snow in that time period. That has allowed for a 96.8 inch snowfall surplus this season.
Let’s head south and take a look at how this winter turned out in the Southeast. There were several snowstorms that moved through, allowing for widespread above-average snowfall. Most of the Southeast is not used to any snow, so when snowflakes start falling in this region, it is definitely notable. The most significant storm impacted the South on December 8th. This storm brought snow to the Gulf Coast, including extreme-southern Texas as well as portions of the Florida Panhandle. Tallahassee recorded a hefty, 0.1 inch of snow. Typically, they receive none. Snow is also extremely unusual in the capital of Louisiana, Baton Rouge. In fact, it is so unusual that the National Weather Service doesn’t even have seasonal snowfall average for this city. This winter, the city received 4 inches of snow. To the north, a heavier band of snow for one of the snowstorms dropped a widespread 3-6 inches from southwestern Mississippi through northern Georgia. Some of the northern suburbs in Atlanta ended up with over 10 inches of snow this winter, which is very remarkable.
The Southeast was probably the most notable region in terms of snowfall. Now let’s take a look at the Midwest, the Great Lakes region, and the Ohio Valley. Snowfall was variable across this greater region. Much of this region had a near-average winter, besides the area east of Lake Erie. In the Mid-Atlantic, while a city like Raleigh was a snowfall winner, Washington, DC ended up as a loser with below average snowfall. St. Louis was also a snowfall loser, struggling to receive over half a foot of snow. This is due to the storm track to the north of the city, allowing for warmer air and rain instead of snow with some of the storms.
Finally, we’re going to examine snowfall in the Midwest and Northern Plains. A widespread 20-40 inches has fallen in this region. All of the cities on the map below, with the exception of Casper, WY, have received slightly below-average snowfall. Kansas City further south really struggled to reach their seasonal average with greater than a foot deficit. We’ll consider Kansas City as a snowfall loser but all the other cities ended up being average to near-loser.
We hope you enjoyed the winter season and received the snowfall you hoped for!