Snow Still Absent from Stateline Landscape

By: METEOROLOGIST MARK HENDERSON
By: METEOROLOGIST MARK HENDERSON

The Stateline continues to bask in unseasonably mild weather as November draws to a close, and all indications are that December's opening act will be just as warm, and in all likelihood, warmer! We've still yet to lay down measurable snow in the area this cold season, and measurable snows are at least a week away, likely more!

It hasn't snowed measurably here since way back on March 4th! Thus, Thursday marked day number 270 in a row without measurable snow at the Chicago-Rockford International Airport, moving us into a tie for 4th place for the longest snow-free time period since weather records began here in 1906! Friday, we'll move into sole possession of 4th place and in coming days, we'll be evaluating the possibilities of moving into the Top 3! While hardly a slam dunk to reach those levels, it certainly is at least a mentionable possibility at this time! For those scoring at home, we'd have to make it to December 17th in order to achieve the longest snow drought of all time!

We decided to take a look back over the records to see if this significant streak of snow free days has any historical impact on the upcoming winter's snowfall. Thus, we scanned the 5 winters following the 5 longest "snow droughts" to see just how much snow they produced. Four of the Five winters produced below normal snowfall, while the one winter of the five that was above normal did so by only about an inch! The average snowfall generated by those winters was 27.7", exactly 9" below the long-term normal seasonal snowfall here in the Forest City!

One thing I did find quite interesting was the despite the rather paltry snowfall tallies in most of these years, many of them featured sticking snow very late in the game! Three of the five produced more than an inch of accumulating snow in April, including a 4" tally in April, 1923!


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