Share

Detroit Snow Record Falls: 133-Year-Old Mark Broken By Unusually Snowy Season

By Jon Erdman
Published: April 21, 2014
  

Wet snow falling late Monday night into tax deadline day Tuesday shattered Detroit's long-standing seasonal snowfall record.

Through April 17, a total of 94.9 inches of snow had been measured in the 2013-14 season at Detroit's Metro Airport, topping the previous record snowiest season, 93.6 inches set in 1880-81.

This is more than double their average seasonal snowfall of 44.1 inches.

While located in the Great Lakes region, Detroit does not pick up heavy lake-effect snow, as they are located too far east of Lake Michigan and to the west and north of Lake Erie.

According to the National Weather Service in Romulus, Mich., here are some other notables about the 2013-14 winter season in the Motor City:

  • Record streak of days with at least 1 inch of snow cover: (77 straight days ending on Mar. 17)
  • Snowiest single month on record: (39.1 inches in January 2014; almost 89 percent of their average snow for an entire season)
  • Coldest November-March period since 1911-12: (Fourth-coldest on record)
  • Most days with highs failing to rise above freezing since 1903-04: (79 days; third-most on record for any season)
  • Most days with lows below zero since 1983-84: (13 days; ties for seventh-most in any season)

Not to be outdone, Flint, Mich. also shattered its previous record snowiest season set in 1974-75, measuring a total of 83.9 inches of seasonal snow through Thursday, April 17.

Earlier this season, several other cities in the Midwest, and one location in the High Plains, also set seasonal snowfall records.

  • Toledo, Ohio: Old record from 1977-78 was 73.1 inches
  • Spooner, Wisc.: Old record from 1898-99 was 95.5 inches
  • Hayward, Wisc.: Old record from 1982-83 was 106.3 inches
  • Rhinelander, Wisc.: Old record from 1938-39 was 107 inches
  • Petoskey, Mich.: Old record from 1970-71 was 183.9 inches
  • Peoria, Ill.:  Old record from 2010-11 was 52.5 inches
  • Billings, Mont.: First greater than 100-inch snow season on record dating to 1934

MORE: Vintage Winter Wear

British writer Arthur Conan Doyle with a party of friends on a winter holiday, circa 1910. (Hulton Archive/Getty Images)


Featured Blogs

Blizzard of 2015 Brings 2 - 3' of Snow and Questions About Forecast Accuracy

By Dr. Jeff Masters
January 28, 2015

The snows from the Blizzard of 2015 have finally ended over most of New England, leaving some truly historic snowfall totals. The biggest snows hit Central Massachusetts, with three feet measured at Auburn, Hudson, and Lunenburg. More than two feet of snow fell across five other states, with 33.2" at Nashua, NH; 30" at Orient, NY; 28.5" at Burrillville, RI; 31.5" at Sanford, ME; and 34.1" at Winthrop, CT.

Live Blog: Updates on Historic Northeast Blizzard

By Shaun Tanner
January 26, 2015

An historic blizzard is heading through the northeastern United States, potentially bringing more than 2 feet of snow to some areas. Visit this live blog often for the latest updates on storm totals and breaking news.

The RRR ‘Ridiculously Resilient Ridge’ Returns to California

By Christopher C. Burt
January 9, 2015

After a very wet first half of December hopes were high that the beginning to the end of California’s years-long drought might finally be at hand. However, virtually no rainfall has fallen across the state since December 18th and none is forecast until at least January 18th. Yet again, a month-long mid-winter dry spell has befallen the state.

Meteorological images of the year - 2014

By Stu Ostro
December 30, 2014

My 9th annual edition.

2013-14 - An Interesting Winter From A to Z

By Tom Niziol
May 15, 2014

It was a very interesting winter across a good part of the nation from the Rockies through the Plains to the Northeast. Let's break down the most significant winter storms on a month by month basis.

What the 5th IPCC Assessment Doesn't Include

By Angela Fritz
September 27, 2013

Melting permafrost has the potential to release an additional 1.5 trillion tons of carbon into the atmosphere, and could increase our global average temperature by 1.5°F in addition to our day-to-day human emissions. However, this effect is not included in the IPCC report issued Friday morning, which means the estimates of how Earth's climate will change are likely on the conservative side.