99.5″ and Counting – Will Twin Ports Set a Winter Snowfall Record?
This winter, when in doubt, predict snow for the Northland. Chances are you'll be right. If you're keeping score, a whopping 99.5" of snow has already fallen; an entire winter's worth of snow by March 1 and we have 2 snow-producing months to go before spring reluctantly pushes into town. Okay, 3 months. We can get a little slush in May, but it usually doesn't amount to much and it pretty much melts on the spot.
Could we possibly pick up 36+" of additional snow between now and Mother's Day? The all-time record winter snowfall since accurate records began was 135.4" during the winter of 1995-96. That was a memorable winter in the Northland for cold and snow. It's a stretch, but not entirely out of the question. According to the Duluth National Weather Service and Duluth News Tribune "This is the fourth-highest snowfall total on record in Duluth as of early March and it’s already the 18th snowiest winter on record in Duluth and less than a foot short of a top 10 seasonal snowfall total."
I'm fairly confident we'll experience a Top 10 Snowfall Winter at KDLH and there is close to a 50-50 chance we'll top 128.3", which would mean a Top 5 Snowfall Winter. Keep in mind we pick up an average of 25" of additional snow between March 1 and May 15, so this is not a stretch at all.
Will we have a March similar to 1917, when 48.2" fell, or an April like 2013, when 50.8" fell? I seriously doubt it, but it would be foolish to discount the trends. Northern Minnesota and Wisconsin have been in the sweet spot of a veritable parade of big, sloppy southern snowstorms this winter. Meteorologists learn the hard way: don't fight the trends.
We are blessed to live in a sprawling resort, and most people I bump into are proud that it can still snow (a lot!) in the Northland. Commuters may grumble, but snow lovers have been euphoric in recent months and I suspect another 2 feet or more of snow before the daffodils pop is pretty much a sure thing. A Top 5 Winter Snowfall is likely.
Spring is right around the corner. But buyer beware: it's a BIG corner!