January 22, 2009

All we need is a mountain

All we need is a mountain

By JILL DENNING GACKLE
If there was a Super Bowl of Snow, McLean County would be coming up on the playoffs.
And Richard Heim of the National Climatic Data Center is ready to place some bets that a win could be in the making.
“For a non-mountain top (climate reporting) station, you might have everyone else beat,” Heim said last week before McLean County experienced a slow thaw.
This past weekend before temperatures reached the 30-degree mark – above zero – 42 inches were recorded as being on the ground in McLean County, according to information supplied by the Wilton climate station.
So far this season, the Garrison area has received approximately 61 inches of snow. According to statistics provided by the National Climate Data Center in Asheville, N.C., Garrison is within four inches of breaking the record set in 1998-99. That season, 65.3 inches of snow was recorded. Statistics provided by the center date back to 1948-49. The next highest total – eclipsed already this season – was 57.6 inches in 1996-97. The average season snowfall for McLean County is 32 inches.
Figures provided by Herb and Sharon Schwarz, official weather recorders in Garrison, show 9.7 inches of snow was recorded in November. December saw 34.1 inches of snowfall – the highest monthly total in 61 years. So far in January, about 17 inches of snow has fallen for a total of 60.8 inches.
If this year is any indication, residents might have to brace for another round next year. Sometimes the heavy snowfall years come in twos: the fall of 1996 through the spring of 1999 was the most plentiful years in 50 years. The fall of 1949 through the spring of 1951 weren’t far behind.
 


The Weather Network