A historical winter storm affected the deep South and even Texas Thursday night into Friday. This storm will definitely be remembered for its widespread and significant snowfall. We’re going to break down state-by-state impacts in this article below.
Not too easy to find a lot of major southern snowstorms, but here are a few we hand-picked. First image is from Dec 24th 2004, second is Feb 1973, and the final is Dec 24th 1989. Last image is yesterdays event. Notice all previous ones were not nearly as widespread. pic.twitter.com/si1nWTXMzK
— WeatherOptics (@weatheroptics) December 10, 2017
The models really underestimated this snow event for the South, and even for forecasters it was hard to predict more than a few inches because it is incredibly rare for snow to fall in this region. The main reason for the underestimation among the models was the cold air. The cold ended up winning out with this storm, so more snow for a large area and longer time was able to fall.
The snow event in Texas was probably the most remarkable. Reports of up to seven inches of snow was recorded in the Corpus Christi area. Now at that National Weather Service office, they “only” recorded an inch of snow. That did make it the third biggest one-day snow event there.
This aerial footage over Corpus Christi really captures the scope of all the snow that fell, showing how widespread this rare event was.
In Brownsville, they received less than an inch of snow, but that made it only the third measurable snow on record for that location! These meteorologists were definitely excited to see the snow.
And this make it official! At high noon, December 8, we measured 0.25″ of snow accumulation (depth) in Brownsville, the first time measurable snow happened here since Dec. 25, 2004, and only the third time since the late 19th century! #rgv #txwx pic.twitter.com/SQ5xotQ2Cj
— NWS Brownsville (@NWSBrownsville) December 8, 2017
Lastly in Houston, 0.6 inches of snow fell for a storm total, making it the ninth biggest one-day snow event there. To put that into context, their biggest one-day snowstorm brought two inches of snow.
Here’s a total snowfall map for the state of Texas:
Snow even made it down into Louisiana. In the city of New Orleans, a brief period of snow occurred there, but it was in areas to the north where it really snowed. Check out this view of the wintry scenes in Abita Springs, LA:
— David (@DavidMora) December 8, 2017
The MODIS satellite shows some of the accumulated snow all the way down into Louisiana, but much of it has already melted due to the above-freezing temperatures and clear skies.
Snow was more impressive and widespread in southern Mississippi. The snow made for beautiful scenes at the capital building in Jackson, where 4.5 inches fell.
Just to the south and east of Jackson was where the heaviest accumulations in the state occurred. Quitman, MS had the jackpot with just over half a foot of snow — Yes, I said half a foot in southern Mississippi.
To the east in Alabama, a thin strip of heavier snow fell. The map below shows the general snow accumulations across the central portion of the state:
This was the wintry scene at the National Weather Service office for Birmingham:
— NWS Birmingham (@NWSBirmingham) December 8, 2017
Surprisingly, Birmingham has many more significant snow events than this most recent one. Four inches of snow fell during this event, making it the fourteenth biggest one-day snowstorm. The record snowfall for Birmingham in one day was 10.3 inches back in 1993!
Portions of the Florida Panhandle experienced a rare snowfall. On Friday, people were welcomed by the “Welcome to Florida” sign — and snow. Snow accumulations in the Panhandle were minimal at less than one inch, but either way this will be a memorable snow event. It’s not often you hear about snow covering the ground in Florida.
Lastly in Georgia, the amount of snow that fell just outside of Atlanta is truly hard to believe and unheard-of. Up to a foot of snow fell just north and west of Atlanta in the suburbs as the snow wouldn’t stop coming down Friday into Saturday. Atlanta schools decided to dismiss students early on Friday as conditions worsened. At the airport in Atlanta, snowfall was lower at 1.4 inches. It seemed like the region was better prepared than during the 2014 snowmageddon event, where people were stuck in their cars for days while trapped on the highways.
This was the view in Temple, GA, where about a foot of snow accumulated:
— Trev✌ (@TrevorPicciano) December 9, 2017
Kennesaw, GA, racking up a foot of snow, also got their fair share.
— The Sirens Project (@sirensproject) December 9, 2017
We hope you enjoyed the snow in the South because another snowstorm in the deep South this winter is highly unlikely.