Snowfall Derby 2011 – Ground Hog’s Day

by Mark on February 3, 2011

There is good news and bad news in snow land on Ground Hog’s Day. Rochester missed a major snowstorm that pounded states south and east of us. The ground hog did not see its shadow, which means spring will shortly arrive. We welcome some sunshine because the area is approaching the 2010 season snowfall six weeks earlier than last year.

Ground Hog Day is based on a German tradition regarding the weather on Candlemas Day, February 2. On this religious holiday the saying was, “If Candlemas brings wind and snow, then spring will very soon show. But if it’s clear and bright, then spring won’t come so right.” A snowstorm prevented any shadows in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania.

Forecasts showed a blizzard with 14” of snow and 20 mph winds was heading for Rochester. Despite the 106 highway plows and mountains of salt, our population streamed to supermarkets, stocking up on toilet paper, flashlights, bottled water, and fire logs. The winds and snow missed us, and nailed Syracuse, who already accumulated over 100” of snow.

Syracuse’s lead seems insurmountable at 122”. Rochester’s 83.5” is 6” shy of last year’s mid-March total. Buffalo scrapes on with 69.1.” We miss El Nino.

It is time to re-sharpen the snowshoes; add some wax to the ski’s; practice figure 8’s on the rink; sharpen the shovel blade; and order a cord of firewood. There are still a couple of feet left in this winter. It is cozy by the crackling fireplace now, but not sure if that will get old by April.

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