2013-14 South Jersey winter now among the all-time snowiest

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Two late-season March snowstorms might have propelled the 2013-14 snow season into one of South Jersey’s top-6 snowiest, according to preliminary figures posted by the National Weather Service Mount Holly Forecast Center./R.J. Liberatore Jr. Two late-season March snowstorms might have propelled the 2013-14 snow season into one of South Jersey’s top-6 snowiest, according to preliminary figures posted by the National Weather Service Mount Holly Forecast Center./R.J. Liberatore Jr. Two late-season March snowstorms might have propelled the 2013-14 snow season into one of South Jersey’s top-6 snowiest, according to preliminary figures posted by the National Weather Service Mount Holly Forecast Center.

Heading into the St. Patrick’s Day snowstorm, South Jersey had received 35.9 inches of snow which offered up statistical proof of what many residents already knew.

Our aching backs and our children’s unusual supply of snow days finally had statistical evidence from the weather guys.

Before the St. Patrick’s Day snowstorm, South Jersey had already recorded its ninth-snowiest winter.

No doubt most of us had hoped it was all over and no more snow would fall. But that was not the case.

A dip in the northern jet stream last week combined with a moisture-laden system that was moved along by the southern jet stream. Their efforts created another snowmaker for the Middle Atlantic States.

Worse yet, the St. Patrick’s Day storm had been forecast to move across the region during the overnight hours. That’s when temperatures were far more likely to support snow rather than rain.

And so we awoke to a white landscape, silent except for the sound of snow blowers, snowplows and the huffs and puffs of human driveway excavators.

However, while National Weather Service meteorologists crunched numbers, we shoveled.

The winter of 2013-14 climbed up the ladder of South Jersey’s snowiest winters while we shoveled and more flakes fell.

It all began in November when a trace of snow was recorded at the Atlantic City International Airport in Egg Harbor Township. That is where the National Weather Service records official snowfall numbers.

About 3.3 inches of snow fell at the airport in December.

Then the winter of 2013-14 began to ramp up in earnest.

About 18.8 inches of snow dropped in January to make for our fourth-highest snowfall total for the month.

But the winter of 2013-14 wasn’t finished yet.

February followed an additional 6.1 inches of snow.

Even during the snowiest years, February always seemed to be the month when meteorologists issued a last call for snow fall.

But there would be no last call for snow this year, a season in which many people begged the weather gods, “Please stop! Please stop!”

Little did we know, the second-snowiest month of the season would come long after the groundhog saw his shadow and long after our thoughts turned toward the upcoming baseball season.

Providing proof that Mother Nature rules the snow show and the calendar does not, 7.7 inches fell March 3 at the airport, according to National Weather Service figures.

Surely, the winter weather season was over.

Right?

No.

Not again.

As the St. Patrick’s Day party holiday landed at our doorstep, so did a half a foot of snow.

With a preliminary 5.9 inchers of snowfall as reported by the National Weather Service, March could end up with at 13.6 inches of snow for the month.

Unfortunately, we needed 6.5 inches of snow on Monday, March 17 for the winter of 2013-14 to enter into the top-five of all-time snowiest winters.

Instead, the winter of 2013-14 could go down as the sixth snowiest with 41.8 inches of snow fall.

Do I hear anyone complaining?

If we had received 7.2 inches of snow, the winter of 2013-14 would have moved into fourth place of the snowiest winters.

But it was not meant to be.

However, here are some more historic figures for you in case you are wondering what were South Jersey’s largest seasonal snowfall totals:

The snowiest winter was in 2009-10 when 58.1 inches of snow fell at the Atlantic City International Airport. In 1966-67, 46.9 inches of snow fell. In third place is the winter of 1995-6 with 46.4 inches. Then came the winter of 1978-79 when 43.1 inches of snow fell.

In 2002-03, 42.3 inches of snow fell.

Today’s snowfall was enough to drop the winter of 2010-11 out of South Jersey’s top 10 snowiest winters. By the way, 33.0 inches of snow fell in 2010-11.

Yes, four of our top snowiest winters came in the past 11 years. Also, seven of our top-12 snowiest winters came since the middle-1980s.

Remember, just a few years ago when all of us 50-somethings used to say, “It never snows like it did when we were kids.”

Be careful what you wish for.

 

 


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