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Golden Snowball Totals for the 2010 - 2011 Snowfall Season
Updated  5/1/2011

GSB Cities This Season Normal Average
to Date
This Time Last Season Normal
 Seasons Average
All Time Season Snowfall Record
Syracuse 179.0 111.8 106.1 121.1 192.1 inches
( 1992 - 1993 )
Rochester 127.0 99.8 89.8 100.3 161.7 inches
( 1959 - 1960 )
Binghamton 117.5 80.8 81.4 81 134.0 inches
( 1995 - 1996 )
Buffalo 111.8 96.7 74.1 97 199.4 inches
( 1976 - 1977 )
Albany 87.2 62.6 45.4 62.6 112.5 inches
( 1970 - 1971 )

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Monday, January 7, 2008

It Was a Nice Winter While it Lasted

Don't even think about it. It's 57 degrees in Syracuse right now and it looks like record highs for the today and maybe tomorrow for some of the Golden Snowball cities. Enjoy it while you can because it won't last and anyone who lives in New york pretty much knows that. I was just looking at some stats from last year and they're pretty interesting.

Last year about the same time we had record warmth. Last year on January 6Th Syracuse broke a record with a temperature of 62 degrees. Binghamton set the high temp record on the 6Th with 6o degrees and Albany broke their record with an amazing 71 degrees. Have we fallen into a pattern like last season for this time of the year. If you own a snowmobile or you're a skier you might want to hope so.

If you look at the snow stats above for last season at this time of the year they are pitiful. By this time last year the sledders, skiers and ski resorts were having a terrible season. That all changed within a few days from this date last year. Right around January 9Th and 10Th is when things really got rolling and winter finally showed up so if we have fallen into last years pattern things could get pretty interesting and the sledders and skiers are going to love it. Right now it doesn't look like the 9Th or 10Th has much to offer in the way of snowfall but right around the corner is some cold air knocking at the door.

That said I'd like to wish my son Christopher a Happy 19Th birthday :) Why do I feel the age with each birthday one of my kids have :(

Enjoy the next couple of warm days and have a great week all.

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At 1/7/08, 11:43 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

my question is whether global warming might be changing our overall trends. traditionally, a thawn of 40, maybe 50 degrees came in mid to late january, often followed by big storms ... are we now getting a more intense, earlier thaw, followed by even more ferocious storms? strange, two years in a row, to have this kind of record-breaking warmth early in the month ... and it will be interesting to see what follows.


At 1/8/08, 8:47 AM , Blogger TheGeneral said...

Buffalo got up to 63 yesterday breaking the previous record of 54 (wow, you don't often see a high temp record being broken by a 9 degree margin very often)!

Temp was still at 62 when midnight came so we already have todays record in the bag too beating the old record of 59. That probably wont last long as we could go as high as 65-68 early this afternoon and maybe even warmer if the sun gets out in full force.

My plan for today... bust out the shorts and I'm heading out to do some fishin! Enjoy the taste of summer while it's here you know we'll be paying big time for this!

At 1/8/08, 9:57 AM , Blogger Patrick said...

I took a look General and 4 of the 5 Golden Snowball cities broke the high temp record for yesterday. The normally warm city of Albany ruined the sweep.

I was thinking the same thing about how most likely we will be paying for these couple of days of nice weather. Have fun fishing and try to catch something other than bait this time, lol.

At 1/8/08, 10:21 AM , Blogger Patrick said...

Sean, if it is global warming all I can say is bring it on ;) Of course I am kidding and I know the effect and most likely major disasters that global warming will bring. When my kids and I take down the outdoor Christmas lights like I did yesterday I write down what the temperature is. For whatever reason the older box is no where to be found but I can remember several different times in the past writing down the temps and the they several of them were like yesterday was. Of course I normally wait for a warm day to take them down so who knows, maybe I took them down in June ;)

Two years in a row on about the same date give or take a day does seem a little unusual though. I agree it will be very interesting to see what follows and looking at the local forecasts we should be going from a high of close to 70 today to snow come Friday.

At 1/8/08, 12:52 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unbelievable. Last year on this very day it was in the 60s as well. I'm down in Brooklyn and seeing places like Fort Drum and Watertown hit 60s is just mind-blowing.

But, I'll make the best of it, and enjoy it.

By the way, can you believe that Upstate New York is slightly warmer than Phoenix, Arizona in January?

At 1/8/08, 4:45 PM , Anonymous Sully said...

To have two consecutive years of all-time record breaking warmth is quite unusual. Then again, when one has such a powerhouse Pacific storm system flooding the country with mild Pacific air on the heels of a record breaking area of high pressure (a few records for highest atmospheric pressure were broken over the southeast last week) the return flow of air between these two very large strong synoptic features will most certainly be able to tap the sub-tropics/tropics. The Pacific system's source air also came from near 30°N, which is the top of the 'horseshoe' of warmer than normal SST's that typically exists during La Nina winters. If you notice many of the all-time record highs across the Northeast for January occured in 1950 (Strong La Nina) and 1967 (cold neutral - ONI -0.4 close to the 5 month consecutive -0.5 or lower to meet La Nina criteria as the next 3 months dipped into weak La Nina conditions -0.5,-0.6,-0.5). Those years also had major severe weather outbreaks very simialr to those experienced over the previous two days.

With that being said La Nina is also known for its wild temperature fluctuations and this will show itelf later this month as a rather significant arctic outbreak should push its way over from Siberia. There's already indications of this arctic air becoming displaced as there's ridging beginning to develop, and more importantly, retrograde over eastern Asia/western Pacific. Usually when this event begins to take place arctic air is about 7-10 days away for the western hemisphere. AO/NAO variables at that time will determine how far south this arctic air will push. Current ensemble means have neutral conditions in the day 7-14 period which would have this airmass evac over the Canadian Martimes/northern New England, but this is still one to two weeks away and much can change between now and then. As it is the AO has been wildly variable for the last 6 months so I doubt a neutral AO will pervail over that entire timeframe so somewhere over the northerntier of the US will get clipped by this airmass.

At 1/10/08, 11:51 AM , Blogger Patrick said...

Anon, I think it's time the North East starts thinking tourism for the winter months. Pretty soon people will be flocking to the NE to get away from the cold weather ;)

Sully, thanks for the great detailed explanation as to what's going on. WeatherT from the forum also mentioned something about some pretty cold air getting ready to most likely over take the NE. Out of curiosity is the current La Nina considered weak or strong???

At 1/10/08, 6:58 PM , Anonymous Sully said...


The current La Nina is actually considered 'moderate'. The CPC rates La Nina on the ONI index which is a measure of the nino 3.4 region anomalies averaged over a 3 month period. In order to qualify for La Nina anomalies of -0.5 or greater must be met for the 3 month averaged period for a timespan of 5 consecutive months. Technically by this definition, we have yet to attain 'La Nina' (this will change at the end of January which will be the 5th consecutive month these conditions will be met).

The rankings are as follows:

Weak: -0.5 to -1.0
Moderate: -1.0 to -1.5
Strong: >-1.5

The latest 3 month averaged value for Oct-Nov-Dec was -1.2.


With that being said, as far as I'm concerned we've reached strong La Nina conditions.

The SOI has recently skyrocketed, indidcating strong La Nina and the pattern over the US all winter has exibited classic La Nina, overcoming other climatic variables.

At 1/10/08, 10:43 PM , Blogger Patrick said...

Sully, thanks again for the informative post. I'm learning a lot this season and I never knew about the 3 month average of 5 consecutive months for a La Nina to be declared. I'll post about it tomorrow if I have a chance.


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