Snow­fall in De­cem­ber is un­usual but not rare

Richmond Times-Dispatch - - FRONT PAGE - BY JOHN BOYER Check Rich­mond.com/weather for John Boyer’s videos and fore­cast up­dates. Con­tact him at [email protected]­dis­patch.com.

If Sun­day and Mon­day bring snow to Rich­mond — ex­actly how much is still to be de­ter­mined — this will be the sec­ond win­ter in a row that didn’t make us wait very long to see ac­cu­mu­la­tions.

Last win­ter, cen­tral Vir­ginia’s first storm came on Dec. 8.

Snow in early De­cem­ber isn’t ex­tra­or­di­nary, but it isn’t some­thing we can rou­tinely ex­pect to see.

Be­fore 2017, we hadn’t ex­pe­ri­enced a pre-Christ­mas snow­storm since 2010.

Early Jan­uary is the av­er­age date for the first snow­fall that ex­ceeds 1 inch.

That’s be­cause there are also those years like 2015 and 2012 when the first sig­nif­i­cant flakes didn’t hit

un­til Fe­bru­ary.

Like any­thing re­lat­ing to snow, that date usu­ally varies a lot from place to place and year to year.

Some west­ern and north­ern parts of the state al­ready re­ported their first snow­fall on Nov. 15, but cen­tral Vir­ginia had rain with that sys­tem.

Here are the statis­tics for the first inch of snow­fall at var­i­ous sites around the state: the ear­li­est ap­pear­ance, the av­er­age date, and the long­est it’s taken to ar­rive.

This is not to be con­fused with the first trace of snow, and it doesn’t in­clude any snow­fall of less than 1 inch.

Rich­mond (since 1897, ac­cord­ing to Na­tional Weather Ser­vice records)

Ear­li­est snow­fall of 1 inch or more: Nov. 6, 1953

Av­er­age date of first snow­fall of 1 inch or more: Jan. 4

Lat­est date for the first oc­cur­rence of a 1-inch snow­fall: April 7, 2007

There also have been some win­ters that did not have any 1-inch snow events. That has also been the case in most of the fol­low­ing ar­eas.

Ash­land (since 1947) Ear­li­est: Nov. 11, 1987 Av­er­age: Dec. 30 Lat­est: March 1, 2009

Hopewell (since 1916) Ear­li­est: Nov. 7, 1953 Av­er­age: Jan. 9 Lat­est: March 9, 1969

Wil­liams­burg (since 1951) Ear­li­est: Nov. 11, 1987 Av­er­age: Jan. 10 Lat­est: April 7, 2007

Em­po­ria (since 1930) Ear­li­est: Nov. 6, 1953 Av­er­age: Jan. 5 Lat­est: Feb. 26, 1950

Far­mville (since 1930) Ear­li­est: Nov. 6, 1953 Av­er­age: Jan. 2 Lat­est: March 16, 1999

Nor­folk (since 1890) Ear­li­est: Nov. 29, 1891 Av­er­age: Jan. 11

Lat­est: March 9, 1932

Char­lottesville (since 1892) Ear­li­est: Oct. 10, 1979 Av­er­age: Dec. 24 Lat­est: March 9, 1976

Dale En­ter­priseHar­rison­burg area

(since 1892)

Ear­li­est: Oct. 10, 1979 Av­er­age: Dec. 9

Lat­est: March 14, 2017

Winch­ester (since 1911) Ear­li­est: Oct. 24, 1917 Av­er­age: Dec. 23 Lat­est: April 13, 1973

Wash­ing­ton, D.C.

(since 1884)

Ear­li­est: Oct. 20, 1940 Av­er­age: Dec. 23 Lat­est: March 25, 2013

Lynch­burg (since 1892) Ear­li­est: Oct. 30, 1925 Av­er­age: Dec. 31 Lat­est: April 4, 1992

Roanoke (since 1911) Ear­li­est: Oct. 27, 1957 Av­er­age: Dec. 24 Lat­est: March 22, 1981 Danville (since 1915) Ear­li­est: Nov. 17, 1972 Av­er­age: Jan. 15 Lat­est: April 5, 1992 Wytheville (since 1929) Ear­li­est: Oct. 23, 1937 Av­er­age: Dec. 24 Lat­est: April 5, 1992

Burke’s Gar­den, Tazewell (since 1895) Ear­li­est: Oct. 9, 1917 Av­er­age: Nov. 26 Lat­est: Jan. 21, 2016

Hot Springs (since 1892) Ear­li­est: Oct. 10, 1979 Av­er­age: Dec. 8 Lat­est: March 9, 1976

Wise (since 1954) Ear­li­est: Oct. 9, 2000 Av­er­age: Nov. 27 Lat­est: Jan. 20, 1995

DEAN HOFFMEYER/TIMES-DIS­PATCH

Ally Balmer, 2, was ready for any kind of weather as she and her mother walked across Grace Street in Rich­mond on Thurs­day.

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