How often does Rochester see ‘spring snow?’

Weather Blog

ROCHESTER, NY (WROC) – After 4 consecutive days spent in the 60s across Western New York this week, many are starting to feel “spring fever” settling in across the region.

Every year we make the transition from winter to spring during the month of March, and during that transition we get “sneak peeks” of the warmer months to come with a brief stretch of milder weather. More times than not we are often fooled by this nice stretch of weather when in reality, we may not be quite done with temperatures and precipitation that resemble a more wintry feel.

Living in Western New York, it may come as no surprise that just because the first day of spring rolls around, doesn’t necessarily mean we’re done with snow. If you’re wondering how often we do see snow during the springtime months, you came to the right place.

The data below shows the number of days within meteorological spring (March, April, May) since 2010 that contained at least .01″ of snow. So far this year we’ve only had 3 days with at least that amount of snow.

Number of days >= .01″ snow in March, April, May since 2010

The data below shows the number of days within astronomical spring (March 19th to June 19th to account for variation in the date of the start of each season) since 2010 that contained at least .01″ of snow. So far, during astronomical spring this year Rochester has seen 0 days with recorded snowfall. However, every previous year looking back over the past 10 years has seen at least a couple days of recorded snowfall from March 19th to June 19th.

Number of days >= .01″ snow in astronomical spring since 2010

With this in mind it begs the question, how late do we typically see snow in Rochester? I dug up some numbers and the dates I found may or may not surprise you.

Every year over the past 5 years (and beyond) Rochester saw at least a trace of measurable frozen precipitation lingering through the months of April and even May.

Another question you may now be thinking is, with the odds in our favor of seeing at least some sort of frozen precipitation after this point, when will we see it? Will it snow again this month and how much?

It’s always a fun game us meteorologists play with Mother Nature this time of year when we predict snow around this time of year. Often times we get several strong storms that are orientated in such a way where much of the region gets engulfed in the warm sector and sees rain, but as it exits our region it brings colder air on the backside. This air can be cold enough to support springtime flakes, and given the nature of these storms they can bring strong, damaging winds too. When we transition from the cold season to the warm season, our area is prone to larger than usual temperature swings, and therefore stronger storm systems.

The weather knows no limitations regarding what month per say it is, but it’s more likely than not that these storm systems are not huge snow makers as we shift towards warmer temperatures that last longer and with less intrusions of cold air. Bottom line, while it sometimes feels like winter will never end, time is inevitably on our side…eventually.

~Meteorologist Christine Gregory

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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