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Bob Johnson
12-12-2007, 08:37 PM
What was the biggest snowstorm you ever saw?

99 blizzard here in Chicago, Illinois. What a storm that was! I was walking outside through it at the age of 10! Got about 21.5 inches total here. Awaiting for another one to :)

Jason Boggs
12-12-2007, 08:40 PM
I saw about 21 inches fall in about a 12 hour period back in 1986 near Pampa, TX. I was in Jr high then, and I couldn't hardly see to walk 3 blocks to my house when school got cancelled. I also remember the power was out for about 3 days. I don't remember what day it was, but I do know it was in early March.

Ohh, I almost forgot. I was also in North Georgia back in 93 during the "storm of the century". I think we got 23 inches on that event. I was visiting my brother on spring break and we were planning a fishing trip. Needless to say, the fishing trip was a goner and the electricity was out for 6 days.

Bob Johnson
12-12-2007, 08:43 PM
Wow 12 inches. Must have been a great expierence. I am sure u hardly ever see snow there.

Angie Norris
12-12-2007, 09:02 PM
Superstorm of 1993...24 inches of the fluffy stuff in my back yard in East TN. First time for thundersnow, too!!!!!

Bob Johnson
12-12-2007, 09:03 PM
Ya I remember that one. What a storm it was!

David Poch
12-12-2007, 09:12 PM
What was the biggest snowstorm you ever saw?

99 blizzard here in Chicago, Illinois. What a storm that was! I was walking outside through it at the age of 10! Got about 21.5 inches total here. Awaiting for another one to :)

I remember that storm. I remember going to bed that night knowing that it was suppose to snow during the night, waking up to thunder not thinking anything of it. When I woke up and looked outside I knew I wouldn't be going anywhere for a few days. That was the biggest for me so far.

David

Chris Hayes
12-12-2007, 09:16 PM
Biggest snowfall that I can remember was the Valentines Day storm of this year. We got about 10 inches of snow here. Some areas recieved a lot more though.

Brandon Smith
12-12-2007, 09:40 PM
The largest storm I saw was during the Blizzard of '96. I lived in Frederick, MD at the time and recieved around 36 inches. I was only in 2nd grade and remember snow well over my waist. It was the first time I had ever seen lightning and and heard thunder during a snow storm.

I was out of school for well over a week because the neighborhoods couldn't get plowed out. Normal snow plows were no match for the large amount of snow. During the storm, a Maryland State Highway truck ended up overheating and broke down in our neighborhood simply because the weight of the snow was too much for his engine to handle. It eventually took large front end loaders to dig us out. My dad remembers commuting to DC in the days after the blizzard and seeing actual bulldozers plowing I-270. I'm sure some of you in the DC area have similar stories.

Jeff Snyder
12-12-2007, 09:56 PM
The big 1991 Halloween snowstorm in Minnesota... I was taking my little brother trick-or-treating at the time, so it was particularly eventful for me. ~28" of snow at the MSP airport in a couple of days, followed by record cold. This event ranked #3 on the Minnesota state climatologist list of Top 5 Minnesota weather events of the 20th century ( http://climate.umn.edu/doc/journal/top5/numberthree.htm ). See the Wikipedia entry of this event (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halloween_Blizzard) for more info.

Dan Robinson
12-12-2007, 10:01 PM
Around 2 feet during the 93 event in Washington, PA.

Patrick Martin
12-12-2007, 10:09 PM
Almost a year ago to the day, the blizzard of 06, 28 inches.
Got snowed into college in 93 with 2 feet, Westfield MA.
The blizzard of 77 (or was it 76, not sure, I was was in grade school), I remember building snow caves and tunnelling through the snow that fell at my parents house in CT.

John Farley
12-12-2007, 10:58 PM
Having lived in areas prone to snowstorms all my life, and being a skier, I have seen a lot of big ones. But the two biggest were both last year. Over 3 days at Wolf Creek in Colorado, 3 feet fell. I skied there two days during that storm, including the peak day. (Big mistake. During the heaviest bursts you could hardly see 20 feet.) BTW - Wolf Creek has had 2 storms even bigger than that in the last two weeks! I was there one day between them, but not during. Lesson learned from last year!

Second biggest, and the biggest aside from at ski areas - December 29-31 last year in Santa Fe, NM, around 24 inches.

An honorable mention goes to the St. Louis thundersnow event in 1982, 14-22 inches, depending on location. It started as rain, and turned to snow just as we were going into a movie. During the movie, we started hearing loud thunder. When we came out, there was already 5 inches of snow!

David Wolfson
12-13-2007, 12:11 AM
I think it was the New Year's Day 1969 blizzard in Northfield (central) Vermont, although technically I didn't experience it because the family was stuck with family in Boston for a few days, where they had a lesser storm. We got back to our Vermont house to find it invisible behind the ten foot banks when the double-bladed grader/plow had cleared the road. The snow on the level was above the window sills (>3') with drifts almost up to the roof of our two story house.

Growing up around Boston through the 50s and 60s, there were quite a few 2'+ storms. If a nor'easter didn't gauge at least a foot the depressing prospect of not missing school the next day reared its ugly head.

Wesley Luginbyhl
12-13-2007, 01:26 AM
Most I have snow I have seen, other than getting into a few blizzards with my dad when we would go to Air Force games in Colorado Springs, would be the TX Panhandle storm on Dec 25-27 of 2000. My hometown got 17" and Ama got 21". That snow lasted at least a week on the roads and a month in the shade. First time I ever got to drive on snow as well. The most memorable thing about the storm I remember is going to bed with it snowing and the forecast saying something like 3-6" and waking up with over foot and a few more inches to go. The forecast may have been better than I remember, but I do remember waking up shocked. If you have never heard 17" of snow slide off the roof of a 50+ year old house, it is something like a train passing through the center of the house.

People got stranded on Highway 287 between Ama and Dumas. They sent Humvees out to get them, humvees couldnt make it through it. Here is an article (http://www.amarillo.com/stories/122700/new_snowpm.shtml) on the storm.

Joel Wright
12-13-2007, 03:11 AM
Best blizzard I've ever seen was the December '87 blizzard that brought 60mph winds, thundersnow mixed with sleet, and a foot of accumulation. Not all that impressive accumulation by blizzard standards, but it came in a relatively quick fashion. I was in 5th grade at the time, and was totally awestruck by the power of this particular storm.

Best snowstorm I've seen was probably the January '95 storm that deposited 15+" along with thundersnow and bouts of 2"+/hr rates. It had winds that topped 40mph at times, but compared to the above blizzard was tame.

The New Years '99 blizzard was memorable too, but since it was spread out over a two-day stretch it's total accumulation seems a bit less impressive to me. Our particular area got about 14". Never did see any of the thundersnow that was reported with that here, but the heart of the blizzard passed just east of my location (Quad Cities at the time).

B Ozanne
12-13-2007, 05:48 AM
Easily the blizzard of 1996, the one that hit the east coast in early January. My town received the highest total in the state with around 29" of snow. The drifting was amazing.

A close second is the February blizzard in 2004, NYC set its daily record. We had thundersnow and 4"+ per hour snowfall rates.

I've seen bigger multi-day 100" events out west but there's nothing like a nor'easter.

Bob Johnson
12-13-2007, 07:23 AM
To bad Chicago doesent get snowstorm like you guys do. We don't have a huge body of water to supply amped Moisture. Grr.

Chris Foltz
12-13-2007, 11:02 AM
Most I've seen from one storm was the 19.7" that fell over 24 hours in Columbia, MO on January 18-19, 1995. Had several hours of +TSSN and snowfall rates approaching 4" per hour at times. Most amazing thing I've ever witnessed.

Rob Mitchell
12-13-2007, 11:58 AM
Biggest snow storm I ever lived through was the Blizzard of '96. I was living on Long Island at the time.

We had 28" of snow on the North Shore of Long Island with that storm. Winds also got pretty high but I can't remember how high. At that point, snow was way more important than wind :)

I think another interesting topic would be...How long (continuous) have you seen snow cover the ground where you lived?

For me, I believe it was the winter of '91-'92 (again, still growing up on Long Island). We had snow cover the ground for 2+ months straight, which I had never seen before and have never seen since. That year, temperatures also got below zero for more than one night which is rare for Long Island. I believe it's also the year that Long Island got two 12"+ snow storms within 5 days of each other. That was the best winter.

-RM

Gerrit Gulden
12-13-2007, 03:34 PM
My family I traveled from Southern California where we lived at the time to BridgePort California for Christmas. It was around the year 1997 I believe. We stayed at a Hotel in town and low and behold we would experience our first ever Blizzard. I remember watching the storm come in from the West over a Mountain. It started out with Light snow and we drove around looking for a hill to sled on. By that night the storm finally started dumping close to 1-2 inches per hour. We woke up the next day with close to 2 feet of snow on the ground with winds in the 50-60 mph range and gusting close to 70mph. We learned later that day that the Highway was shut down and the realness of being snowed in was finally real. We traveled to a small store in town to buy some food and I stayed in the car. The car rocked with each gust and the snow was soo heavy that visibility was very close to 0%. All in all, after the storm departed there was over 4 feet of snow and close to 7 feet above 7k feet. When it came time to leave we had to drive with a Caravan of about 100 cars close to 100 miles out of our way to avoid the avalanche area, Basically from Bridgeport california to Nevada and then south to Southern California. It took us about 5 additional hours to get home.

I have great footage of the storm but it is on VHS tape and I havent had the time yet to convert to my pc. I will try to soon.

I can only hope for another storm like that where I live now In Idaho. =)


-gerrit

Bobbi Andrzejek
12-13-2007, 05:00 PM
The biggest blizzard I ever saw was the storm in Denver in 1982. It began on Christmas Eve, if I remember correctly. It snowed for 24 hours and we received 48" of snow. You couldn't even see the cars parked out on the road, as they were totally buried. The front door of the house was completely covered and we had to exit through the garage door. Not that there was anywhere to go! LOL! After four days, I finally snowshoed to a 7-11, looking for milk for the two babies in the house. The 7-11 was bare. It was quite an experience.

Robert Rohloff
12-14-2007, 10:45 AM
This was the worst storm I have ever seen. I lived in Grand Rapids Michigan and we received 20-30 inches of snow with winds over 50 mph.My house had a hill to the west and on the north along the driveway. The snow drifted 5-10 feet deep. I had a Pontiac Firebird parked infront of the garage. The last thing you could see was the top of the CB antenna.
It took 4 people almost 5 hours to dig enough around it to get it into the garage.

You know it is bad when 4x4's stop, then the snowmobiles would not work the snow drifts were too deep. Vehicles were totally buried. It took tracked vehicles to perform rescues. I walked about 2 miles to the Sheriffs Department where I worked and was there for 3 days.

Robert Dewey
12-14-2007, 10:49 AM
December 16th, 2007 in southeastern Michigan. We got 18 inches combined with a northeast wind gusting up to 50MPH. I could hear thunder occasionally, but the near zero visibility limited any visual aspect.

Oh, wait. Hasn't happened yet. Jinx ;)

Mike Smith
12-14-2007, 11:05 AM
I am showing my age here -- The February, 1971, blizzard that affected a wide area from ICT to AMA. It is still the all-time record snow for ICT. Here is what OCS says about the 'third biggest weather event in OK history':

3. Blizzard, February 21-22, 1971. Although this snowstorm was confined to a relatively small part of northwest Oklahoma, the storm total of three feet at Buffalo nearly doubles the maximum storm total of any other snowstorm in Oklahoma history. Winds whipped snow into enormous drifts, forcing some people to use second story windows to get out of their homes.

NWS Southern Region says:

March 22-25, 1957 Blizzard

Worst spring blizzard on record.
Responsible for 11 panhandle deaths, numerous injuries, $6 million in damage.

Texas Panhandle reported 30 ft drifts; Oklahoma Panhandle reported 15 ft drifts.
10 to 20 inches of snow reported across the panhandles.

20 percent of the panhandles cattle population was lost in the storm.
Huge drifts stranded thousands of motorists, including snowplows attempting rescues.

True white out conditions, with visibilities reduced to zero at times.

I question the "10 to 20 inches" in the above, as I recall there were reports upwards of 30 inches (seems to be confirmed by OCS's comments) but there were certainly measurement problems with a storm of this intensity.

This storm also caused the "Mississippi Delta Tornado Outbreak" which killed 121.

Billy Griffin
12-14-2007, 12:17 PM
I remember growing up in Paducah, KY - I think it was in 1978, we had a 30+ inch snowfall. Can't recall when and exact totals.

cdcollura
12-14-2007, 12:21 PM
The infamous blizzard of 1978 experienced first hand as I was a child in Ronkonkoma, New York on Long Island.

http://www.sky-chaser.com/image/stplog/pother04.jpg

This is a picture of my father shoveling the heavy snow from the front door, just so we can get out.

The driveway was another story, the 1977 Cadillac is completely covered except for its rear bumper in the right of the picture. This storm brought 90 MPH winds to New England and snow totals of 3 to 4 feet.

These extratropical storms can have winds as strong as their distant tropical cousins, hurricanes.

Eric Flescher
12-14-2007, 12:51 PM
Up until 1973 and when I was younger, we made giant igloos from previou storms . But not like this one.

Providence and New ENgland were hit with a massive stormstorm after I left after graduating URI in 1973. The sun shut down everything I think for days and no cars could go anywhere . People had to walk.

If you know the year if it was other then 1978- let us know

Dustin Wilcox
12-14-2007, 01:06 PM
I remember the winters when it snowed 20 inches almost every week, couldn't even get out your front door. I had to walk to school too, up hill both ways.

There are only two snow storms that stick out in my mind here in E NE and both were unusually early winter storms, one was on Halloween I don't remember the exact year but I would guess I was 5 or 6 so about 1992, it snowed so much that the town called off Halloween (yeah I guess they can do that). The other was the blizzard of 1997 another late October Storm, I recall going to bed knowing there was a chance of snow, though the forecast wasn't for a lot of snow, I then remember being the first one up as I wanted to see how much it snowed, I recall walking down the stairs to a Jaw dropping scene, almost every single tree was touching the ground as over a foot of real heavy snow fell on trees that still were holding most of their leaves, the damage from that storm can still be seen in many of this areas trees. I don't recall even seeing any snow in October since that storm.

Some Pictures of the Storm's impact on Lincoln here, it was actually a little worse near my hometown. All that snow fell over night.
http://www.journalstar.com/shared-content/gallery/?galleryid=7&gallery_page=3&album_page=0&albumid=804&mediaid=9068

Tom Pastrano
12-14-2007, 06:45 PM
Sounds funny, but growing up as a kid we had a freak storm in South Texas. Snow started to appear in the forecast a couple of days before but was only suppose to be a dusting. It started snowing and didn't stop for 2 days. We got a total of 15 inches of snow at my house. On top of the snow, there was one inch of ice. I remember all the dogs were able to walk on top of the snow because the ice was so thick. The grass was still green and it was a preculiar site to see all the palm trees with all the snow on them.

jladue
12-14-2007, 07:56 PM
I can't say what the biggest snow event I witnessed was. Let me make a list of notables:

1. Feb 5-7, 1978. I was growing up in Poughkeepsie, NY at the time and remembered Junior High closed for two days. That's a big deal for the Hudson Valley. I think we got 24" but it was difficult to tell with the blizzard conditions. What was great about that storm was that it was preserved for a month afterward due to persistent cold.

2. January 20-25, 1985 lake effect at Oswego, NY. I may be cheating here but I cannot remember more severe winter storms than a good lake effect band. Most of the 36" fell in 18 hours, two feet in 7 hours. Winds gusted to 70 mph in town, temps were near 0 F, and there was occasional lightning.


2a. A friend and I chased a similar event in January 18-20, 1994 from the DC area. This event featured the same kind of ridiculous conditions. The 70 mph winds dropped down to nearly dead calm when the center of the band went overhead. Oswego got 27" overnight but the town of Mexico got 42" in about 12 hrs. There was an anvil over the band, lots of lightning, and occasional vortices traveling down the band center. The snow was statically charged and stuck to everything. Even at 0 F, the snow was great snowball making material.

3. Another friend and I chased the Oct 25, 1997 blizzard in west KS. We stopped in GCK and scoped out a motel to stay in before we toured the town in the blizzard. There was nothing like X-country skiing downwind through a golf course being propelled by sustained 50 kt winds. Of course we had to ski upwind for the return. I believe GCK's obs were sustained 50kt with snow thunder. We wound up with perhaps 15" of snow. Just a little further west, Syracuse KS got buried by 20' drifts. We were the furthest west that one lane was opened on Rt 50 amidst vehicular carnage.

Miriam Lawrence
12-14-2007, 08:02 PM
Last winter's blizzard here in Vermont dropped 31" in our area... here are our truck and minivan to give you an idea. We had 5 foot drifts against our house--took us the better part of a day to dig out enough to even get from the house to the driveway.


The blizzard of '96 in Baltimore was quite something, too. What's funny is the difference in reactions. Here in Vermont, we got 3 feet and people's most extreme reaction was, "Uh, yeh-up, that's a lot of snow." Down there, they hear there's going to be a few inches of snow and there's a run on every store, good luck finding milk or bread!

Mike Peregrine
12-14-2007, 08:34 PM
I LOVE the pic of the dog catching the snowball.

The biggest in recent memory was in December, 1992 in NYC. It was between 15-20" with lots of cool drifts. '96 was the next big one there, but I missed that one. And then '02. The big snows in eastern cities are really cool. Everything is so quiet and peaceful - and beautiful. I lived there for two great snow events and remember them dumping the snow into the East River to get rid of it on the streets. It's great because it totally transforms the city.

Michael Towers
12-15-2007, 12:44 PM
To bad Chicago doesent get snowstorm like you guys do. We don't have a huge body of water to supply amped Moisture. Grr.

Sure we do, but not on a frequent basis. Most of the snows we get are the 1-3 inch variety, storm totals of a 12”+ happen about once every 15 years on average. And we’ve had some whoppers, 3 in my lifetime. I was too young (2 years) to remember the first, the 1967 blizzard that dropped 23 inches and paralyzed the city.

http://www.chipublib.org/004chicago/disasters/snowstorms.html


Officially, the biggest snowstorm I saw and remember was the 1999 New Years storm that dumped 22 inches. But while that was the biggest, it was not the worst. The Blizzard of ’79 was an historic event in Chicago weather and also Chicago politics. The season already had seen more than the annual average of 39” on Jan. 12, with about a foot blanketing the ground in my NW suburban town. The forecast called for 2-4” of snow, the only meteorologist I recall who predicted the blizzard was John Coleman, known more for his irreverent style than his forecasting acumen. In true John Coleman style, he predicted an “Oklahoma Hooker” would bury Chicago, the term referring to the track the storm would take as the Low hooked sharply NE as it moved beyond Oklahoma. So caught mostly by surprise, the area received 20”+, followed quickly by an arctic snap that dropped temps below 0. The city was unprepared, the aftermath created problems so serious and vast that the mayor lost his job in the election the following month. Ever since, snow preparedness had been a top priority for all local governments, lol. School was closed for a week, then closed again shortly thereafter as another snowstorm hit the area. This was on top of days lost due to previous snows. I was looking at the school year ending in July had we been forced to make up the lost days, but the school district deemed the bad weather an “Act of God” and decided not a single day would have to be made up. Yep, that’s right, a school district using the term “Act of God”, it sure was a different world back then.

On a note to the 1999 storm, forecasters indeed predicted a major storm would hit, but took the conservative-as-usual approach with most calling for 8-12”. By that time John Coleman had moved on to Milwaukee, but like a blast from the past he appeared on a local talk-radio show a couple days before the storm. The hosts had recalled how he was the only weatherman back in ’79 (that’s what we called them back then, not meteorologist but “weatherman”) that predicted the blizzard and they wanted his assessment of the upcoming storm. Like a blast from the past, good ‘ol John proclaimed that once again an “Oklahoma Hooker” was coming to Chicago, with storm totals perhaps exceeding those from the storm in ’79. The hosts laughed at him but not at his prediction, and sure enough he was right again. You gotta like a weatherman with good humor and the stones to predict a big one. John, by the way, went on to found The Weather Channel.

Dick McGowan
12-15-2007, 12:51 PM
1989?? On Thanksgiving day in Garden City, I think we had 26" of snow! I was sledding off of our roof. Then in 1998, I was in Dighton, KS, where there was a cold rain, drove 10 miles south, and it was sleet, got to K-156 highway, and it was a complete blizzard. Took me 2.5 hours to get to Garden City, 52 miles away (most of the driving was just 24 miles). I'm not sure on the total, but it was a lot! I couldn't see 5 feet in front of me, and saw about 15 vehicles flipped over, or stuck in the ditch, I even helped one lady who was stuck about 10 m. east of GCK. I watched several ambulances/emergency vehicles heading that way, and were sliding around also. I could only do about 10-20 mph!

kevinv
12-15-2007, 03:15 PM
in 1976 in cornwall ontario canada. i was in grade 2 or 3. in the morning i went to school. could hardly see. in the afternoon, my parents kept me home because the snow diftws were so high, you could hardly see across the street.

i also rember that the 401 hyway was closed to snow. never seen that again until the icestorm of 98. 6 days no power in 98.

Maggie Kahman
12-15-2007, 03:29 PM
The worst snowstorm I have ever witnessed is probably the blizzard of '97. We had almost 3' of snow in our yard alone, not to mention the almost 6' snowdrifts. We literally were snowed in, we could not get out of our house!

Nathan Edwards
12-16-2007, 11:00 AM
I had the pleasure of taking off from Boston Logan International Airport late at night on April 1st 1997. I think I was on one, if not the last flight to depart that night before they closed the runways. I love flying and usually don't get scared but that day I was very nervous. I think about 2 foot of snow had fallen with winds gusting to 50mph when we finally taxi'd.

Certainly that snow storm was much worse than anything I've experienced here in the UK. We just don't seem to get decent snow events here these days.

Matt Chatelain
12-16-2007, 07:25 PM
12-29-06 Blizzard in the far western Oklahoma panhandle in Boise City. 18 inches with huge drifts. I'll never forget seeing a drift on a building that was about 10 feet high. The event crippled SE colorado and Cimmeron county OK for 3 weeks.

Chris Carter
06-18-2009, 06:25 PM
The worst snowstorm I have ever witnessed is probably the blizzard of '97. We had almost 3' of snow in our yard alone, not to mention the almost 6' snowdrifts. We literally were snowed in, we could not get out of our house!

That was the worst "single" winter weather event i experienced, i also remember it being the worst Halloween too. City of Bellevue cancelled it due to the down power lines, ugh.

Jason Foster
06-18-2009, 09:54 PM
Here in the DC region it would likely be the following:

Blizzard of 1996
President's Day II storm (2003)

Karla Dorman
06-18-2009, 10:05 PM
Blizzard of '78. Don't remember how much snow fell, but drifts were large enough to bury a tractor-trailer for five days before anyone found it - the guy, James Truly, had just delivered a load of steel to the Fisher Body plant in Ontario, Ohio (where my Daddy worked) and was on the way back north, on 13, just outside of Mansfield - got caught by the snowstorm. He survived, made the national news.

Matt Sellers
06-18-2009, 10:59 PM
31 inches, with 25 inches in 24 hours, Nov. 27-29, 1997, in Beulah, CO.

I had missed the 'Blizzard of 1997' but was in Beulah for Thanksgiving. The storm was initially forecast to drop 5 to 9 inches, but the mid-level circulation slowed to a crawl in northeast New Mexico/southeast Colorado, maintaining moist upslope flow into the southern Colorado foothills for a much longer period than forecast.

Robert Edmonds
06-18-2009, 11:56 PM
I lived in Nederland CO when I was in highschool. I believe it was 2003. We got ~6.5ft in 2 and half days. The community center's roof collapsed from the snow. After we got plowed out I went to pick my dad up, who had walked to town. As I drove the snow started to bendthe roof of the van as I hit bumps on the road. That was one heck of a snow storm...

Jacob Ferden
06-19-2009, 12:05 AM
March 18, 2005 in Preston, MN: 27 inches, setting the all time 24-hour record for the KFKA reporting station

Stephen Levine
06-19-2009, 09:41 PM
Living in Springfield, OH (SW Ohio) it had to be the blizzard of January '78.
The evening before was gray and drizzly, about 34 degrees. I was awakened at 1 am. with the windows rattling and the ceiling occasionally groaning as powder snow blowing horizontally outside looked like smoke in the streetlight that never reached the ground. Snow and wind was so intense that powder snow made it through double storm windows onto the inside window sill of my living room.
The temps fell to near 0 F. and there were a couple bright blue flashes either from power flashes or lightning.
The next morning included drifts up to the 2nd story of my apartment. The City brought in graders to clear the drive way.
A "warm front" coming in from the NE part of the system bringing Maritime air all the way to Ohio raised temps to about 11 F. late in the morning after the blizzard arose.
The city was closed down for 2 days. Winds were officially clocked to 70 MPH gusts.

D. Hayes
06-19-2009, 11:31 PM
What was it late March 99 in Oklahoma. Worst for me anyways. I got orders from Altus AFB OK to Hickam AFB HI so we was heading home to visit family before we left. It was me and the wife, the baby and a dalmatian all in my 94 Grand Am. We got to OKC and it started a mixed rain and snow then full out blizzard. We was maybe 20 miles west on I44 when the traffic started to back up, a semi had jack knifed blocking the entire interstate. Hours later they finally started diverting everyone to Route 66 which was now a small 2 lane with deep ditches on both sides. Maybe 5 miles later again the road was blocked with another truck jack knifed. This time we was stuck since they closed all the roads. We was forced to stay the night in I think Stroud OK in a baptist Church.

The community was great and they brought out food and blankets for everyone. I swear it was the first time I wasn't able to sleep in Church!

Well about 6am they had the roads opened again I got the car thawed out and had to rock it back and forth to get it free from the snow bank. We all packed back in and got back on I44 heading east. Not 10 miles and I get a flat and there's no place to change the tire since the snow was piled up on the sides. I climb a hill and stop to change the tire to only see that my tire was punctured by a tire chain link! A state trooper stopped and put his lights on while I changed the wheel. I made it to Popular Bluff Missouri on the spare when I noticed my car was starting to over heat. I pulled into a wal-mart and seen my radiator steaming out a pin hole leak. Some Bars' stop leak and 30 miles later we made it home after nearly 36 hours on the road. .
Maybe not the worst winter but definitely the worst for me!

cdcollura
06-22-2009, 07:00 AM
Good day all,

http://www.sky-chaser.com/image/stplog/pother04.jpg

Blizzard of 1978 (February) ... The infamous blizzard of 1978 experienced first hand as I was a child in Ronkonkoma, New York on Long Island. This is a picture of my father shoveling the heavy snow from the front door, just so we can get out.

The driveway was another story, the 1977 Cadillac is completely covered except for its rear bumper in the right of the picture. This storm brought 90 MPH winds to New England and snow totals of 3 to 4 feet. These extratropical storms can have winds as strong as their distant tropical cousins, hurricanes.

George Kourounis
06-22-2009, 11:43 AM
In my home region of Southern Ontario, it is a short drive to the lake effect snow squalls from Lake Ontario, Erie or Huron. I'm spoiled for snowstorms up here and last year we had one monster squall come in from Lake Huron that dumped 76cm of snow in 24 hours. If you want to see consistent, big snowfalls, come up here to the snow belt!

Here are a few examples of what the cars in the area looked like.

http://www.stormchaser.ca/Snow_Blizzards/2008_11_21_Supersquall/TN300_2008_11_21_Supersquall_06.jpg http://www.stormchaser.ca/Snow_Blizzards/2008_11_21_Supersquall/TN300_2008_11_21_Supersquall_13.jpg

http://www.stormchaser.ca/Snow_Blizzards/2008_11_21_Supersquall/TN300_2008_11_21_Supersquall_07.jpg http://www.stormchaser.ca/Snow_Blizzards/2008_11_21_Supersquall/TN300_2008_11_21_Supersquall_04.jpg

George Kourounis
www.stormchaser.ca (http://www.stormchaser.ca)

Alex Carroll
06-23-2009, 10:39 AM
The biggest snowstorm that I have in memory was Februrary 23-25, 2007 in Winona, MN. We had about 30" in one night (the 23rd) - one of the few times I have seen thundersnow. I had a few friends down from Minneapolis for the night (none of us had checked the weather, oddly) and they were stuck in town the next day and night because all roads out of Winona were closed. The next night we had a blizzard that gave us 6-7' drifts. My friends were able to get out of town at about 4PM on the 25th. The snow was so bad that we lost one of my friends cars on a street in Winona for about a week.

Joe beier
06-23-2009, 01:15 PM
I don't remember specifics sadly but here in central il some time back ... Maybe 7-8 years ago it was so bad that EVERYthing was canceled. Nothing open. Couldn't even open the doors cause they were snowed shut etc. If I had to guess based on my height back then and things it covered I'd say 4-5' snow and 6-7' drifts? Very rough estimates.

Tom Dulong
06-23-2009, 03:11 PM
I lived in Nederland CO when I was in highschool. I believe it was 2003. We got ~6.5ft in 2 and half days. The community center's roof collapsed from the snow. After we got plowed out I went to pick my dad up, who had walked to town. As I drove the snow started to bendthe roof of the van as I hit bumps on the road. That was one heck of a snow storm...

A link to a photo from that storm may be found here (http://www.fin.ucar.edu/netpub/server.np?find&site=imagelibrary&catalog=catalog&template=detail.np&field=itemid&op=matches&value=1723). I was in Estes Park for this storm, where we received a mere 3-4 feet. Got around with snow shoes for a few days before road crews were able to find the pavement again.

Scott Nelson
06-24-2009, 10:33 AM
Blizzard of 78 up here in New England. What we lack in tornadoes, we make up for with snow! We've actually had more snow dumps in other storms (think we only got 32 inches of snow in a 24 hour period a few years back) but the blowing and drifting in the 1978 was unmatched. Lived in a raised ranch as a kid and the snow was only a foot or two below the upper windows on one side of the house. You couldn't see the top of the cars in our driveway. They called off school for over 2 weeks during that one which has never happened again. I do remember delivering my newspapers the next day and it took me over 6 hours on a route that used to take me 45 minutes each afternoon.

Josh Murfield
06-25-2009, 12:55 PM
November 1993- I lived in Bismarck, North Dakota at the time. It snowed for two days straight dropping 34". I was in high school at the time, my car was nothing but a bump in the snow out there by the curb- it took me an entire afternoon to dig it out. Funny thing is, they are so hardy up there- this much snow fell and school was not even cancelled!

Andrew de la Garza
06-25-2009, 01:21 PM
2/11/83, Rockville MD: 24"
3/8/08, Columbus OH: 21"

Jason Young
06-25-2009, 06:06 PM
Mine would be the winter of 1989 when Ardmore , Okla. got 12 + of snow , which is crazy for southern Oklahoma. If I am correct 4 out 3 news stations said we would get no snow . lol.

Clarence Bennett
06-26-2009, 12:48 PM
1993 Superstorm, Rupert, WV at an elevation of near 2500 ft. Received 37" of snow that weekend.

jeremy wilson
07-01-2009, 03:32 PM
In feb. 2003 we got a foot in far southern oklahoma. The flakes were so big they sounded like slush balls hitting the ground. CG's pounded the ground throughout the event. Very remarkable for these parts. By far the biggest storm I ever witnessed was right outside Buffalo, NY in December 2007. It must have snowed three feet in a few hours! Got stuck at a truck stop and thought it was the end of the world being a country boy from southern Oklahoma.

Eric Duncan
07-01-2009, 04:13 PM
The biggest snowstorm i have ever seen in my life was this year in South Central/South West Kansas. The March Blizzard of 2009. I drove through it for ****s and grins and rolled on it. I drove all the way from Newton to Pratt, and back....in the dark. WHITEOUT conditions, 30+ inches of snow in less than 24 hours,and 50 MPH winds with higher gusts, literally pushed the explorer off the road a few times. There were abandoned vehicles EVERYWHERE. It was interesting to see how tight the freezing rain/snow line was that day on my way out to Pratt. All the way from ICT to just east of Kingman was solid freezing rain. It was so intense the 4x4's windshield wipers became weighed down and stopped working at one point. Then just West of Kingman it went to all snow at the drop of a hat. It was spooky seeing all the vehicles becoming stuck. Couldn't tell what was the highway and what was the ditch. INSANE! Blizzard of '09. One thing i will never forget is the CG lightning that the incredible convective snow bands would produce. I witnessed a small oil pump get struck and go up in flames just west of pratt!! INSANITY!!!

Jason McKittrick
07-01-2009, 05:11 PM
Here in eastern Nebraska we are not as snow prone as some might think. We get what I would call notable snowstorms only about once every 10years. I was alive for the 1975 blizzard here in Omaha but I don't remember much. from what I have read we got about 15 inches and then the next day we had a NW gale kick in with gust to about 65mph, made for some remarkable photographs.

Then in 1988 I was in high school March 27-28 we received 18.6" with wind sustained winds of 60mph + for more than 12 hours. I remember some drifts an excess of 20 feet.

October 27 1997, This one was not forecast very well by the local mets, at 6pm three hours before it began, it was obvious to some of us, but the official forecasts from all the local TV and NWS was for anywhere between 3 and 5 inches. We experienced <1/8mi visibility and heavy snow for 8 straight hours. Reflectivity on radar >40dbz for the entire event. Temperatures never dropped below 34 degrees and ground temps were in the 40's. We only measured 13" however doing the snow rate math and accounting for warm ground and air temps there is no doubt in my mind that 18" or more fell. Trees were still green, some people were without power for 2 weeks and if memory serves at the height something like 300,000 people were without power.

Most recent and equally as impressive storm March 1 2007, 15" fell in 6 hours with max wind gust measured at 62 mph. Started during the middle of morning rush and sun was shinning by 4PM. That storm stopped cars and semis in their tracks on the interstate, I had never seen anything like it before or since.

Leah Robertson
07-06-2009, 12:46 PM
Ironically, the biggest snowstorm I ever witnessed happened to have occurred here in Albuquerque, NM where my parent's house received a whopping 2 feet of snow during the last few days of December in 2006, which is absolutely unheard in this part of the country. A week before that, they received a foot of the white stuff. Everyone around here was in complete shock since 4 snowflakes typically shuts down the whole city and people around here are not at all accustomed to driving on slick roads. The whole state got slammed that week with a blizzard affecting the eastern part of the state and heavy snow falling in the mountainous and valley regions. Since all the interstates were closed, I became stranded as well and couldn't return back to Kansas for several days.

Drew.Gardonia
07-11-2009, 07:51 PM
Jan or Feb of 2004 in Kansas City, MO. we had a particularly odd snow event, where we got 13" of snow in about a 4-6 hour period...never seen anything like it in my life. It just snowed and snowed and snowed, and to make matters worse I was out driving in it for work, delivering stuff.

before that it was 1993 and we got 18" of snow over a 10 - 12 hour period? (fuzzy on the details as I was only 13 at the time) but i remember we were making snow tunnels to play in.

Joshua sims
07-19-2009, 09:14 AM
The best snowstorm I was in was in '97 in Cottonwood, Arizona. We got like a foot of snow in about two days. It would just snow off and on all day. I don't remember the month or day I was only 7 at the time. I lived here in Kansas before that but I don't remember any of the snowstorms that we got.

Kevin Rolfs
07-19-2009, 01:26 PM
The biggest snowstorm I have experienced was a few years back in november of '06. I was in high school at the time and remember it being overly warm during thanksgiving break with highs in the mid 70's. The one thing I remember most was wearing shorts and a t-shirt to my grandmas house on thanksgiving day. A few days later however all the unusually balmy weather came to a crashing end. I remember waking up for school with temps in the upper 50's thinking it was going to be a beautiful day. By the end of the day we were experiencing thundersnow and by the next morning we had 15 in. of snow on the ground. That day the precip ran the gamut with respect to precip types and was also one of the very few times a blizzard warning was issued in northeasten Oklahoma. All In all think it was one of the biggest snowstorms northeast Oklahoma had seen in quite some time.

Jerry Prsha
07-19-2009, 04:39 PM
Having lived in areas prone to snowstorms all my life, and being a skier, I have seen a lot of big ones. But the two biggest were both last year. Over 3 days at Wolf Creek in Colorado, 3 feet fell. I skied there two days during that storm, including the peak day. (Big mistake. During the heaviest bursts you could hardly see 20 feet.) BTW - Wolf Creek has had 2 storms even bigger than that in the last two weeks! I was there one day between them, but not during. Lesson learned from last year!

Second biggest, and the biggest aside from at ski areas - December 29-31 last year in Santa Fe, NM, around 24 inches.

An honorable mention goes to the St. Louis thundersnow event in 1982, 14-22 inches, depending on location. It started as rain, and turned to snow just as we were going into a movie. During the movie, we started hearing loud thunder. When we came out, there was already 5 inches of snow!

Yeah.. I was a senior in high school and we drove around all night pushing cars out of ditches on this one. 23 inches of snow, thundersnow... It was coming down in balls instead of flakes. The city of St. Louis was pretty much shutdown for the better part of a week.

Eian Greene
09-22-2009, 06:17 PM
1993 Superstorm, Rupert, WV at an elevation of near 2500 ft. Received 37" of snow that weekend.
Off that same storm, in Smyrna, TN I received about 6-7 inches. I was 7 at the time and naturally, a snowman and other antics followed.

Aaron Locke
09-23-2009, 07:46 AM
I think it would have been Jan. 03. I was stationed at Ft. Drum, NY WAY upstate. The Tughill area just to the south of Watertown routinely gets over 100 inches of snowfall a year (lake affect). A couple buddies of mine were headed down to Oswego to a concert in my 1980 Scout. Driving south on 81 the 4 lane divided highway was down to one lane each way b/c they were using 10 foot tall auger snow plows to clear one center lane down the HWY. Snow was piled 15 feet high on either side of the cleared center "lane". It was a very erie feeling, felt like driving in a tunnel. All said in done I believe they got just under 9 feet in 48 hours.

Bart_Comstock
09-23-2009, 03:11 PM
The biggest snowstorm I ever saw was while I was in Breckenridge, CO. I remember not being able to see more than 10ft in front of me on the slopes and when I finally made it to the bottom we found out that the power had gone out to the lifts and there were people trapped on them for hours while the diesel generators warmed up. Every major highway across the divide was closed by this storm and the roof of DIA's tents even tore open under the weight of the snow. The best part about this was it extended my vacation by 4 days and once the snow stopped falling it proved to be the best virgin powder my board has ever glided over. I want to say this was in January of 2003 or 2004 but I cant remember.

Robert Hettchen
11-14-2009, 10:38 AM
south central kansas march 2009 here is all my pics
http://viewmorepics.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewPicture&friendID=410032428&albumId=1236071

jshields
11-14-2009, 05:13 PM
i believe it was the winter of '97-'98. it was one of the worst and snowiest winters in south dakota in a LONG time. i know there were alot of records or near records set. i was back home in gettysburg, sd and over about a 1.5-2 days we received 27"-30" the snow was so deep i remember we could basically walk off the roof of our garage into the snow in the backyard. our garage was part way underground in the back! even though i was 20, i remember still having a blast jumping off the roof and playing around in the deep snow!

Stephen Locke
11-14-2009, 06:43 PM
Pratt/Greensburg, Kansas; March 29, 2009

Fourteen images. (http://www.tempestgallery.com/kansasspringbliz.html)



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GlennMartin
11-14-2009, 11:40 PM
25-27 Jan 1978. Simply known as the blizzard of 78. About 20 inches of snow fell but what was so impressive was the extremely intense winds which lasted for days producing white out conditions. Several sad stories of people who wandered from their homes never finding them again. Some found dead only a few yards from their homes. Cars were drifted over with drifts to 25 feet. I will never forget it. According to Wiki still holds a non-tropical record low pressure reading.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Blizzard_of_1978

Jake Tyson
11-15-2009, 01:09 AM
i know i havent sen one all that big. but the largest snow storm iveseen is 3ft in 6-8 hours when i was a lil kid (maybe 6 years old, in detroit MI)

Tarmo Tanilsoo
11-15-2009, 01:26 AM
Certainly 23-24 November 2008. A foot of snow, and nation paralyzed. Power was out so long that our power company gave us a refund. I shot a video of the storm at the time as well:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r5FXbfEOxP0

B Ozanne
11-15-2009, 08:36 AM
Unofficially two ski vacations. Crested Butte, CO and Whistler, BC where over a week we had 6-10+ ft of snow. I've been to Alta after a 100"+ dump. But those don't really count for this discussion.

I'd have to go with the Blizzard of '96 in Darien, CT. I think we had between 25" & 30". Thundersnow and ten foot drifts in certain locations. The town had to pile up snow at the beach parking lots because they had no place to put it.

Matt.Elliott
11-15-2009, 09:48 AM
Oh how I love snow! In fact, big snow events are what spurred my interest in becoming a Met. It sure stinks living in Norman and getting teased all the time by snow. It was strange moving here from the NE and listening to what people consider a big snowfall around here. Too me, if its not at least eight inches I get pretty disappointed (don't get me wrong I will still take it). I'm not sure I would even call a snowfall event that's less than a foot a big snowfall. Around here I sometimes here people say "Huge storm coming, were going to get four inches" and I just laugh. I don't know, I guess I'm spoiled as are many others who live in better snow locations. Now that I have been here for a few years, I just take what I can get and if that's not enough then I go skiing!

While I have experienced numerous 8+ inch snowfalls living in the Northeast, I am pretty sure the most I ever recorded at my home location was during the Blizzard of '96 in the Washington D.C. metro area (2+ feet in Mclean, VA). I remember being out of school that entire week since the roads were a complete mess. My stepdad was a doctor so he took me on a few adventurous drives around the beltway to get to the hospital. I still remember driving on I-495 with two lines of five snow plows in front of us clearing a path! There was absolutely no one else on the road so it was pretty fun crashing into snow banks from time to time in the old suburban! :)

Non-home locations: Since I ski as well, I get a chance to see lots of big snow storms away from home. The two most memorable occurred in the Sierra Nevada's. I don't recall the exact year but one winter when I was between 11-13 ('91-'93) we got 5+ feet in Tahoe in less than 36 hours. It was coming down so hard at times that no one could even ski. My family ran into a Franz Weber (for those who don't know, he is an Olympic champion speed skier from back in the day) during the height of the blizzard and he actually invited us to go out and ski with him. There were probably only 100 people on the mountain that day, I will never forget skiing with Franz, but I could barely see him (not because he was so fast, but because I was in 4 feet of powder and was not much more than 5 feet tall, not to mention the blinding blizzard conditions)! :)

The other big snow event, I never made it to! My family and I got stuck on I-80 on the way up to Tahoe in 1988 due to Donner Pass being closed somewhat unexpectedly (Donner Pass had received a foot plus in less than five hours). I only tell this story since we didn't even move on the interstate for 12 hours. Roundtrip, from my house back to my house (i.e. we had to turn around), it took 24 hours (normally would have taken 4). It was a fun experience for me being young, since we just turned the car off, had snowball fights and built igloos with kids from other cars right there in the middle of Interstate 80. I am sure my mom was stressing though. I think we picked up a quick foot just waiting there (we were obviously at a lower elevation).

Robert Dewey
11-15-2009, 10:04 AM
December 16th, 2007 in southeastern Michigan. We got 18 inches combined with a northeast wind gusting up to 50MPH. I could hear thunder occasionally, but the near zero visibility limited any visual aspect.

Oh, wait. Hasn't happened yet. Jinx ;)

I was reading through this thread and seen this. I thought "when the hell did that happen?" and realized I was wishcasting.

In reality, the most I've ever seen here in my hometown was about 13 inches back in 2000 or 2001. Another snowstorm dropped 11-12 inches in 2004, from none other than an Alberta Clipper.

Finally, there was a late April snowstorm back in 2005. We were supposed to get absolutely hammered. My house - in Rochester Hills - ended up with 1-2 inches of slush. A few miles west got 7 inches... and a few miles west of that ended up with 14-18 inches. I drove to those locations (as I couldn't believe it), and it was an incredible sight given the low snow:liquid ratio: http://www.crh.noaa.gov/dtx/events/snow200504250906.php

Brett Roberts
11-15-2009, 12:36 PM
February 15-16, 2003, in the Washington DC area (a.k.a., the second President's Day Storm). I measured 22" at my family's house in Sterling, VA, which was a good 10" more than any other storm we saw during our eight years there. Just an awesome setup, with overrunning precipitation giving us nearly a foot before the coastal low even formed. After all the times we'd been screwed during the years leading up to that (especially a couple times in the winter of 2000-01 where we'd have a forecast of 12"+ from 12 hrs. out turn into nothing), I couldn't make myself believe it was going to happen until the snow was sitting in my backyard, even though it looked incredible on the models.

Unfortunately, the snow in that storm was very dry, with temperatures hovering around 10 F through the event. I've still yet to see a really good dumping of heavy, wet snow that clings to the trees, which I think would be even better. I'm not even going to bother crossing my fingers on that one until I get out of Norman.

Lou Ruh
11-15-2009, 04:39 PM
I experienced a few storms in SE PA in the mid 1980s that were significant. One dumped close to 3 feet in the western suburbs of Philadelphia.

I also went skiing in Austria (the area around the town of St. Anton) in the mid 80s. During the trip, it snowed non-stop for five days (well ... except for about two hours of sleet). I don't know the numbers on how much fell, but, they had to close the lifts one day because there was not enough clearance for the chairs to travel without bottoming out. That same storm also closed the roads and rail lines into and out of the town. Some of the roads were still not open when we left due to an avalanche (right to the back of the town).

B Ozanne
11-15-2009, 08:25 PM
Unfortunately, the snow in that storm was very dry, with temperatures hovering around 10 F through the event. I've still yet to see a really good dumping of heavy, wet snow that clings to the trees, which I think would be even better. I'm not even going to bother crossing my fingers on that one until I get out of Norman.

I remember that in New England. It was 0 to 10F during that event, and the 20+ inches we had turned out to be a non-issue. The blizzard of 2006 was warmer but similar. Central Park set a 24 hour record, but it seemed like a really easy snowstorm. It settled quickly and drifting wasn't an issue.

Phillip Aubin
11-25-2009, 10:18 AM
Most I "almost" got to witness was back in my home town just after I moved to MN. Payson, Arizona usually gets 6" a winter. Well one fatefull day in 2006, late spring they got 30"+ in one day, and an unoffical report of 36". This is 5 hours into that 11 hour system.

http://b0.ac-images.myspacecdn.com/00566/05/20/566010250_l.jpg