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Northeast Heads Into the Snowiest Time of the Year According to Snow Maps

2 months ago
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This week's snow event is arriving right on schedule for the Northeast. Despite February being considered the tail end of winter for most parts of the country, the second month of the year is also typically the snowiest for many regions.

What is it about the conditions in February that support the chances of heavy snow? Read on for more information about what the data tells us.

February Snowiest Month of the Year for Much of the Northeast

Data from the Global Historical Climatology Network Daily (GHCN-D) has been used to create a map detailing which month typically records the most snow in different locations throughout the U.S. In order to qualify for the data analysis, a location needs to see an average annual snowfall total measuring a minimum of 6 inches.

Not surprisingly, the bulk of the snowfall for all locations happens on the back half of the solar winter. This time period extends between November 6 through February 5 in the Northern Hemisphere, translating to about 45 days on either end of December's winter solstice.

While the snowiest month of the year varies between regions across the U.S., February is the clear winner for the major metropolitan areas in the Northeast. This includes cities such as New York City, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., Baltimore, and Boston.

The most snow also generally falls in February across southern and coastal portions of New England. The rest of the region sees more snow chances in December and January.

February also takes the crown in areas of the northern Plains, including much of Nebraska, South Dakota, northern Kansas, and central and eastern portions of Wyoming. This is also the part of the country known as Blizzard Alley in light of its high propensity for winds and snow combining to create these treacherous conditions.

When looking at the western portion of the nation's heartland, the end of November into December and the end of February into March represent the highest chance of snowfall accumulation.

However, rising temperatures heading into the month of March results in the moisture often falling as a rain and snow mix.


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