Has this winter been as harsh or mild as you think?


Majestic sunrise in the winter mountains landscape. High resolution image

(WTAJ) — It is interesting as if you walked down the street some people would say this has been a rough winter so far, others would respond with “What winter?”. Yes we did have the largest snowfall in about a decade for much of the region. Some places even set a new record for a single day snowfall.

Snowfall of Dec 16-17 2020
December snowfall via National Weather Service in State College

But beyond that storm and once ice event, there has not been too many storms. The National Weather Service has developed a way to track the societal impact of the winter season called the Accumulated Winter Season Index. This is related to the intensity and persistence of cold weather, the amount of snow, and the amount and persistence of snow on the ground. So how does the season stack up. State College is the point at which they measure this index in our region. Some places will end up a little higher some a little lower. Here’s how we stack up through yesterday.

This yearLast yearHighestLowest
Accumulated Winter Season Index

As you see, the December snow and ice events have made the winter so far a little harsher than last year but that came in one big rise. We’re just on the lower side of an average winter so far. So if you had to measure it harsh or mild, we have been leaning slightly to the milder side.

The measurement of this counts meteorological winter which runs from December 1st through February 28th.


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