Penacook isn't really in a snow shadow, but is in the Merrimack Valley. As a result, I don't get snow until the entire air column saturates. Storms that bring snow to places like Boston often are too far away from Penacook to bring us as much snow. A closer storm often doesn't pick up as much water from the Atlantic as a coastal hugging storm does. Overall, I had the least amount of snow of everyone tracked here.
As for temperatures, the core of the season was a subzero stretch for February 12-15 which had lows of -2.4°F, -12.2°F, -13.5°F, and -8.2°F. Those were the only subzero temperatures of the entire season, only five other days went below 10°. On the other hand, in December, January, and February there were eight, one, and seven days above 50°F. That February day got up to 62.3°F!
All that brought two interesting events. Forsythia had started blooming in southern NH before the cold wave, and the buds were about to bloom here. The cold killed all the blossoms and most of the buds. Several other flower species were harmed, especially in Massachusetts.
An unofficial early sign of spring is when the Red Sox equipment truck leaves Fenway just before the start of spring training. It left this year on February 10th - I and others had trouble with this because we felt winter hadn't started!
The rest of the winter continued with the woeful snowfall and snow depths. Low temperatures in March and April hovered around freezing, so real spring conditions were slow to develop.
As for Snow Depth Days, low snowfall and above average temperatures can lead to low SDD counts, and the only redeeming event of the season was to set several new minima in my records, most notably least snowfall (22.5") and least SDDs (146), the old minima were 43.0" and 170.
Paul Venditti summarized the differences between last season and this one with this in his February report:
Note that the Winter (1 Dec-29 Feb) temperature departure was plus 5.5 F°. Last winter's three month departure was minus 4.3 F°!
Note also that February last year averaged 12.6 F°, or 16.6 F° colder than this February!
|Poland Spring ME||0.6||1||5.3||13||10.8||128||14||87||4||3||4.4||4|
|Mt. Mansfield VT||3||8||8.6||55||15||80||26.9||574||16.9||741||10.9||909||15.9||896||5.6||388|
|Poland Spring ME||39.1||236||6.0|
|Mt. Mansfield VT||102.8||3651||35.5|
|Dennis Bollea||Fairhaven MA|
|Wayne Cotterly||Poland Spring ME|
|Steve Gunn||Bristol NH|
|Paul Hansen||Marlboro MA|
|Jim Hilt||Bow NH|
|Chris Seeber||Charlestown RI|
|Paul Venditti||Pepperell MA|
|Ric Werme||Penacook NH|
I think depth days is a great statistic, and I'm surprised that it is catching on slowly outside of the NE Weather Spotters mail list. I never expected that the NWS would embrace it quickly, but I had hoped that TV meteorologists would start using it, in monthly summaries, if nothing else. It would be nice if ski areas would use it, but they may not wish to if they are not likely to be #1 consistantly. (And if only one area reports depth days, it would not be a good comparative statistic.) The University of Vermont has graphs of snow depths at Stowe through many seasons.
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