Does early-season snow portend an extra-snowy winter?

Weather Blog

Dear Tom,

Does early-season snow portend an extra-snowy winter?
Tina Gagnon Morris
Dear Tina,
October’s snowy exit with 4.6 inches of snow on the last two days of the month made it the city’s second snowiest October, runner-up to October 1989 with 6.3 inches. While the emotional conclusion would be that a snowy winter lies ahead, the data does not support that conclusion. Chicago weather historian Frank Wachowski checked out the seasonal snowfall totals that followed the city’s five snowiest Octobers and found that all five seasons produced totals below the city’s current normal snowfall of 36.7 inches. The largest seasonal snowfall was in the winter of 1989-90 with 33.8 inches and the least was in the 1957-58 season that logged just 20.0 inches of snow, despite 1.9 inches in October.


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