There are sometimes when I have a hard time coming up with new ideas for this post. This week I will take a look at some winters in the past. One of the things I will be looking at are as some who post on here that winter only last one or two months or that there will be 100” plus at Grand Rapids. The winters I will look at this week are 1922, 1972, 2002 and 2012. So, 100 years ago, 50 years ago 20 and 10 years ago.
The winter of 1921/22 had a mean of 27.1° That winter season Grand Rapids seen 41.1” of total snow fall. Only 64 days had 1” or more of snow cover. The month-by-month December 1921 had a mean of 30.2° the high for the month was 54 on the 1st the low for the month was 8 on the 25th there was a total of 10.7” of snow fall the most fall of 4” fell on the 5th the most on the ground was 2” January had a mean of 23.6° the high for the month was 50 on the 4th and the low was +2 on several nights. There was a total of 5.4” of snow fall with the most being just 1.2” on the 13th The most snow on the ground was just 2” February 1922 had a mean of 27.5° the high for the month was 55° on the 23rd and the low was 7 on the 16th There was a total of 9.2” of snow fall with the most in one day being 3.5” on the 2nd the most on the ground was 6” on the 3rd March 1922 the mean was 36.7 the high for the month was 72 on the 25th and the low was 16 on the 1st there was 9.1” of snow fall with the most on one day being 5.5” on the 20th the most on the ground was 6” on the 21st The winter of 1921/22 some would call a “short one”
The met winter of 1971/72 mean was 24.6° that winter season GR had 79.6” of snow fall. There was 1” or more on the ground at GR for 85 days. The month by month break down. December had a mean of 32.0 the high was 62 on the 10th and the low was 12 on the 1st there was just 3.7” of snow fall that month with the most being just 1.3” on the 17th the most on the ground was just 1” Winter started in January 1972 with a mean of 20.8 the high for the month was 44 on the 10th and the low was -16 on the 16th there was 22.6” of snow that month with 3.9” being the most the most on the ground was 6” Winter continued into February with a mean of 21.9 the high all month was 44 on the 28th and the low was -11 on the 10th 16.9” of snow fell with the most being 4.4” the most on the ground was 6” Winter of 1971/72 dragged on into March with a cold mean of 29.6 the high for the month was 62 on the 21st and the low for the month was +3 as late as the 10th there was 14.2” of snow fall with the most being 4.1” on the 29th the most on the ground was 4” on the 30th I guess one could call the winter of 1971/72 a rather long one.
The mean temperature for the meteorological winter was a mild 31.6° There was 105.2” of snow that season but of that 53.9 fell in December and 22.6 fell in March! For the winter season there was 1” or more on the ground on only 23 days.
December 2001 was one strange month. The mean for the month was 33.9° The high on December 5th of 69 is the record high for the month of December at Grand Rapids. The low for the month was +9 on the 31st up to December 23rd only 2.4” of snow had fallen but between the 23rd and the 31st at total of 51.5” fell in 8 days. After that snowy end to December came January 2002 and talk about a big change after a cold fist 2 days the rest of the month was very mild. That month seen a mean of 30.2 the high for the month was 56 on the 27th and the low for then month was +1 on the 1st and 2nd and while there was 17.5” of snow that month 7.9” of that fell on the 31st February 2002 had a mean of 30.6. The high for the month was 36 and the low was +10. A total of 8.7” of snow fell with the most of 2.7 falling on the 28th Winter continued into March when the mean was just 30.9 The high for that March was just 56 and the low was +3° There was 22.6” of snow fall with 13.3” of that falling on the 2nd The winter of 2001/02 was a mild but snowy winter.
Just like the winter 10 years before it the meteorological winter of 2011/12 was very mild with a mean of 23.2° That winter Grand Rapids only had 51.2” of snow fall and there was 1” or more on the ground on only 34 days.
December 2011 would set the tone for the rest of the winter with a mean of 35.0 the high for the month was 57 on the 15th and the low for the month was 17 on the 10th there was 4.7” of snow fall that month with the most being 1.3” on the 27th January 2012 would be mild with a mean of 29.7 the high for the month was 54 on the 6th there were a total of 3 days above 50 that month. The low was +3 on the 19th A total of 27.0” of snow fell with the most being 6” on the 14th February was yet another mild (for winter) month with a mean of 31.9. The high for the month was 50 on the 1st and the low for the month was +3 on the 11th There was a total of 16.2” of snow with the most on one day of 6.2” falling on the 10th And as for March that March started out rather average with highs in the 30’s and 40’s the first 5 days and there was even 2” of snow on the 3rd but then on the high reached 63 on the 6th and soon March would be more like June. The mean for the month was 50.7 The high for the month was 87 on the 21st there were a total of 5 days in the 80’s and 5 more in the 70’s The low for the month was 19 on the 3rd
In the winters that I used for this post one thing is clear that at leas in the winters of 1921/22, 1971/72, 2000/01 and 2011/12 there were some slow starts and even a warm winter can have a lot of snow.