December 2013: 4th snowiest in Wilmington since 1948!

Three early season snowfall events propelled December 2013 into 4th place on the list of all-time snowiest Decembers for the Wilmington area with 11.9” of snow. This was more than 8.0” above the December normal of 3.5”.

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Figure 1. December Snowfall Totals at the Wilmington/New Castle County Airport for the period 1948—2013. Note that data were measured at Porter Reservoir from 1996 through 1999.

A surprise snowfall associated with heavy bands of precipitation moved through the region on Sunday, December 8th, dropping 8.5” of snow at the Wilmington/New Castle County Airport. This was followed by another fast moving system on Tuesday the 10th that dropped another 2.9” of snow in the Wilmington area. Another 0.5” of snow fell on Saturday the 14th before precipitation changed to freezing rain and rain. The second half of the month was snow free except for some trace amounts.

Wilmington’s snowiest December on record occurred in 1966 when 21.5” of snow fell at the Wilmington Airport during the month. 2009 was also a “December to remember” when 19.7” of snow fell in the Wilmington area. The graph of December monthly snowfall totals (Figure 1) shows the variability in early season snowfall since 1948 for the Wilmington/New Castle County Airport.

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