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Twin Cities Snow

November 18, 2011

       As the weekend of November 19/20, 2011 approaches, I’m hearing chatter about the possibility of snowflakes. We haven’t seen measureable snow in the Twin Cities this autumn, but that may change this weekend.  By the way, measureable snow means one-tenth of an inch or more. 

       I’ve lived in the Twin Cities my entire life, except for time spent in Madison Wisconsin to earn my meteorology degree.  It still amazes me how surprised some people are when it snows in late October or even in November.  Our earliest measureable snowfall in the Twin Cities was on September 24, 1985, when four-tenths of an inch was observed.  Our earliest one inch or greater snowfall occurred on September 26, 1942.  1.7″ was the official tally that day. In case you’re wondering, the average date for our first snowfall of one inch or more in the Twin Cities is November 18…based on records going back to 1891. 

      If you want more snowfall statistics for the Twin Cities, you can find a wealth of information on the MN State Climatology web site…here is a link: http://climate.umn.edu/doc/twin_cities/snowmsp.htm   The linked site shows  snow statistics that go back all the way to 1891.  As the note at the bottom of the snow stat page indicates, the most recent 30 year period is typically used by researchers to establish what is “normal”.  The 30 year normal for season snowfall in the Twin Cities is 54.0 inches.

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