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Historic Storms Slam Northern Plains

April 16, 2013 1 comment

A series of significant spring storm systems have left their mark across parts of the Great Plains States through the first two weeks of April.

This is the time of year when we expect these types of storms, especially severe weather and tornadoes, but this has not been the case. Heavy snow and mid-winter like weather conditions have been the headlines as we close in on the first month of spring.

Let’s start on April 9 when a low pressure system exited the Rockies and moved across the central plains. Incredible amounts of snow fell across western South Dakota and especially in the Black Hills. At the Rapid City Regional Airport, the greatest ever recorded single snowstorm total was observed with 28.2″ falling by April 10. Downtown Rapid City recorded their second greatest total ever measured, although records date back far longer than they do at the airport. My favorite towns in the Black Hills, Deadwood and Lead, came in with 30″ and 26.4″, respectively.

Not to be outdone by their neighbors to the south, North Dakota was in the crosshairs for the next system beginning on the 13th. An incredible amount of all-time records were observed in Bismarck, which go all the way back to 1875. First, a daily record for snowfall on April 14 was set with 17.3″ falling in 24 hours. This also broke the record for snowfall on any single calendar day of the year, besting the 15.5″ that fell on March 3, 1966. Also a new record for snowfall in the month of April, with 21.5″ as of the 15th, has been set breaking the previous record of 18.7″ from 1984.

Winter storm warnings are currently in place across the Rocky Mountains north of Denver, southeast Wyoming, and extending into northwest Nebraska and southwest South Dakota. A blizzard watch has also been issued across the plains of Colorado east of Denver. This storm doesn’t look like it will bring record snowfall like the previous two storms, but totals of 6 to 12 inches are likely for many areas.

To go along with these systems, cold air has been entrenched across the northern plains states since March. Much of the Dakotas and northwest Minnesota have seen temperatures greater than 10 degrees below average for March and midway through the month of April.

Fargo, ND has yet to reach 50 degrees in 2013. The latest date they have ever recorded to reach 50 is April 17. This will surely be broken and could go for at least another 8 to 10 days.

The below average temperatures have created a very serious problem for communities stretching along the Red River, including Fargo. The snowpack has yet to melt over North Dakota and northern Minnesota. Because of this, it looks like a top-five record crest of the Red River is likely in Fargo. When warmer temperatures do arrive, flooding will certainly be a major concern. The snow-water equivalent of the snowpack ranges from 4 to 8 inches for a large portion across these areas. It looks as though a spring flood on the magnitude of the 1997 and 2009 record floods are in store.

Residents here are no strangers to floods, though. In just 7 days, one million sandbags were filled in Fargo. There has been much attention paid to the threat of significant flooding this year, and preparations will be ongoing until it comes.

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Lake Effect Snow Clobbers Western New York, Buffalo Next

February 1, 2013 Leave a comment

Later tonight a single band of lake effect snow will strengthen and move into the Buffalo Metropolitan area. A Lake Effect Snow Warning has been issued for Northern Erie County. 6-12″ of snow may fall by Saturday evening near the airport and areas further north.

A lake effect snow storm has produced more than 2 feet of snow in areas of Western New York.

Locations south of Buffalo in ski country have recorded impressive totals in the last 36 hours.

Here are the latest storm totals courtesy of the Buffalo National Weather Service and snow spotter network;

Chautauqua County

Ashville – 10.0″

Jamestown – 8.0″

Ripley – 4.9″

Dunkirk – 4.0″

Cattaraugus County

Delevan – 28.0″

Perrysburg – 24.0″

Freedom – 17.0″

West Valley – 12.0″

Franklinville – 8.5″

Erie County

Springville – 20.0″

Sardinia – 19.0″

Glenwood – 10.0″

Wyoming County

Arcade – 21.0″

Warsaw – 10.5″

New York State Lake Effect Snow Totals

January 24, 2013 24 comments
Parts of Western and Central New York were buried by as much as 2-3 feet of
lake effect snow from January 20 through January 24, 2013.
Below are reports of total snow accumulation during that period.
Information from the Buffalo, NY NWS website was used.

ALLEGANY COUNTY
   RUSHFORD               7.6   700 AM  1/24  
   WEST ALMOND            6.6   700 AM  1/24  
   ALFRED                 2.9   700 AM  1/24  
   WHITESVILLE            1.5   700 AM  1/24  

CATTARAUGUS COUNTY
   PERRYSBURG            25.0  1100 AM  1/24  
   WEST VALLEY           16.0   700 AM  1/24  
   LITTLE VALLEY         13.5   700 AM  1/24 
   FRANKLINVILLE         11.0  1100 AM  1/24
   RANDOLPH              10.0   700 AM  1/24  
   ALLEGANY               6.8   700 AM  1/24  
   OLEAN                  4.0   700 AM  1/24  

CAYUGA COUNTY
   FAIR HAVEN            36.0   700 AM  1/24 
   STERLING              35.0   700 AM  1/24

CHAUTAUQUA COUNTY
   RIPLEY                26.8   700 AM  1/24  
   FORESTVILLE           20.5   700 AM  1/24  
   SINCLAIRVILLE         20.0  1100 AM  1/24
   JAMESTOWN             12.5  1100 AM  1/24  
   KENNEDY               11.1   700 AM  1/24  
   DUNKIRK                8.6   700 AM  1/24  

ERIE COUNTY 
   COLDEN                18.9  1100 AM  1/24 
   GLENWOOD              17.5   700 AM  1/24 
   BOSTON                15.5   700 AM  1/24  
   COLLINS               15.0   700 AM  1/24
   HOLLAND               14.1   700 AM  1/24  
   HAMBURG               12.2   700 AM  1/24 
   BLASDELL              11.3   700 AM  1/24  
   WALES                 11.0   700 AM  1/24  
   EAST AURORA            6.5   700 AM  1/24  
   ELMA                   5.9   700 AM  1/24   
   WEST SENECA            3.5   700 AM  1/24  
   GRAND ISLAND           3.4  1100 AM  1/24
   WILLIAMSVILLE          2.1  1100 AM  1/24  
   BUFFALO NIAGARA ARPT   2.0  1100 AM  1/24  

GENESEE COUNTY
   STAFFORD               0.5   700 AM  1/24  

JEFFERSON COUNTY
   MANNSVILLE             7.0   700 AM  1/24  
   PIERREPONT MANOR       4.0   700 AM  1/24  
   THERESA                0.3   700 AM  1/24  

LEWIS COUNTY
   OSCEOLA               19.0   700 AM  1/24  
   HIGHMARKET            10.7   700 AM  1/24  
   CONSTABLEVILLE        8.5    700 AM  1/24  

LIVINGSTON COUNTY
   DANSVILLE              2.1   700 AM  1/24  

MONROE COUNTY
   HAMLIN BEACH          11.0   700 AM  1/24  
   HILTON                 8.0   700 AM  1/24  
   PARMA CENTER           7.0   700 AM  1/24  
   ROCHESTER              4.4  1100 AM  1/24  
   ROCHESTER ARPT         3.6  1100 AM  1/24  
   NORTH CHILI            0.9   700 AM  1/24  

NIAGARA COUNTY
   NEWFANE               12.0   700 AM  1/24  
   BARKER                10.0   700 AM  1/24 
   LOCKPORT               5.1   700 AM  1/24  
   NIAGARA FALLS ARPT     5.0  1100 AM  1/24  
   YOUNGSTOWN             3.1   700 AM  1/24  
   NORTH TONAWANDA        2.8  1100 AM  1/24  
   PENDLETON              2.5   700 AM  1/24  

ORLEANS COUNTY
   LYNDONVILLE           13.0   700 AM  1/24  
   CARLTON               10.0   700 AM  1/24

OSWEGO COUNTY
   FULTON                38.4  1100 AM  1/24 
   PHOENIX               36.8  1100 AM  1/24  
   PALERMO               36.7  1100 AM  1/24 
   BOWEN CORNERS         34.0   700 AM  1/24 
   BENNETTS BRIDGE       33.0   700 AM  1/24 
   PULASKI               30.7   700 AM  1/24 
   MINETTO               26.9   700 AM  1/24  
   LACONA                24.8   700 AM  1/24  
   SANDY CREEK           18.4   700 AM  1/24  
   OSWEGO                17.3   700 AM  1/24  
   MEXICO                14.9  1100 AM  1/24  

WAYNE COUNTY
   SODUS                 12.0   700 AM  1/24 
   SODUS POINT            8.0   700 AM  1/24 
   WALWORTH               2.7   700 AM  1/24  
   PALMYRA                1.3   700 AM  1/24  

WYOMING COUNTY
   WARSAW                13.2   700 AM  1/24  
   SILVER SPRINGS         8.5   700 AM  1/24