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Thursday, November 3, 2011

More Snow in the Future?

            Today the local weather reports seem rather boring.  Each day the morning announcers lament the lack of snow in Minnesota.  Around town, however, friends are telling me to just sit back and wait.  When the snow comes, it is going to arrive with a great deal of fanfare.
            History has shown that the month of November is a time of unpredictable and often frightening weather.
Snow at SHC, November 2010
            Only twenty years ago, the Halloween blizzard of 1991 witnessed a snowstorm that delivered more 28 inches in a two day period.  The snow started to fall at noon on October 31 and continue for two days.  It was a heavy, wet snow that stayed.  Trick-or-treaters were forced to climb over snow drifts to reach houses for candy.  In the Twin Cities, children were advised not to travel through the neighborhoods.  “Visit the malls,” they were told.
            Other spectacular snow storms included the Armistice Day storm of 1940 when 27 inches of snow fell.  It surprised so many people in the upper Midwest that thousands were caught in the storm that hit the upper states.  Weather watchers reported snowdrifts as high as twenty feet.  In the end, more than 150 deaths were credited to the storm. 
            November of 1911, exactly 100 years ago, Sherburne County was hit with yet another blizzard.  The Sherburne County Times newspaper reported on November 16, that a blizzard hit the area and although no measurements of snowfall were taken, temperatures dropped to three degrees below zero. Some reports claimed the snow continued to fall for ten days.  Nearly two weeks after the storm, early in December,  the newspaper was still reporting of the efforts to dig out from the snow.
            The cold weather, dramatic changes, and the fierce snowstorms make the climate a major topic of discussion.  The diversity and quick changes in weather certainly make this the most interesting topic to approach.