I will put together a comprehensive afternoon blog concerning the Friday rainfall potential this afternoon as well as how January of 2012 ranked in terms of the warm weather and some other tidbits in the middle of the afternoon. So look for that at around 3PM or so. I’ll send out an alert to you on our twitter account @fox4wx when the blog is done.
This morning though, in light of what was happening 1 year ago, and considering that this year we can’t by 1″ of snow, I though it was a great time to look back at what happened. You surely remember the Groundhog Blizzard. Now granted Groundhog day is tomorrow, but the storm was known as this nationally and it was impressive in scope, intensity and duration.
Here is a look at tan animation of the surface maps showing the storm intensifying and moving through the region.
Here are a bunch of excerpts from the NWS in Pleasant Hill concerning the storm.
“A historic winter storm impacted a wide swath of the central and eastern United States on Tuesday, February 1st into Wednesday, February 2nd, impacting much of the Central Plains, the Lower Great lakes into the Northeast. Northeast Oklahoma, Eastern Kansas, much of Missouri, and northern Illinois were the hardest hit with one of the strongest blizzards ever to impact the region from Kansas City to Chicago. Locally, cooperative and community weather observers in Warrensburg, Clinton, Sedalia, Calhoun, Boonville and Brookfield, Missouri each reported daily record snowfall totals near or exceeding 20 inches”
Nearby, an equally impressive snowfall of 12-18 inches fell along the Interstate 70 corridor, causing the first ever state-wide closure of Interstate 70 from Tuesday night into early Wednesday. The impacts were also equalled across the Ozarks, where Interstate 44 was closed from the Oklahoma border through Springfield due to the impacts of heavy snow. Snowfall rates of 2-3 inches per hour also resulted in the temporary closure of Kansas City International Airport Tuesday afternoon and evening. These snow rates also brought travel in the Kansas City metropolitan area to a grinding halt, causing temporary closures of many of the urban expressways.
“In addition to the heavy snow, this event also brought very rare blizzard conditions to the region. Strong northwest winds frequently gusted between 35 and 40 mph across the region, reducing visibilities to near zero at times in white out conditions, and drifting snow 3 to 4 feet deep in many areas. Within the band of heavy snow, several reports of thundersnow were also observed from Joplin to mid Missouri and northeast Missouri.
Outside of the record snowfall of central Missouri, significant snowfall also was observed across the bulk of eastern Kansas, western and northeast Missouri, with 9-12 inches of snow falling across the Kansas City metropolitan area. The all-time daily record snowfall for the Kansas City area is 20.5 inches, which was recorded March 22-23, 1912.
|Location||Snowfall Observed February 1-2, 2011 (inches)||Record Snow Observed (inches) and Date**|
|Warrensburg, MO||23||20 on 2/19/1938|
|Windson/Calhoun, MO||22||20 on 2/20/1904|
|Sedalia, MO||21||17 on 2/19/1978|
|Brookfield, MO||20||12 on 2/13/1978|
|Boonville, MO||19||13 on 12/1/2006, 2/24/1975|
|Clinton, MO||18||Tied 18 on 2/19/1938|
|Kansas City Area||9-12″||20.5 on 3/23/191|
(** Note: Observed record snow totals for some of these stations are based on an incomplete period of record data, and should be considered unofficial)
The storm was VERY well forecasted for by all local media. It didn’t take anyone by surprise and it was impressive. It generated 8.9″ of snowfall @ KCI (officially for KC) and winds were gusting to 45-50 MPH!
What an amazing contrast to what is happening this winter.