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Posted at 7:00 PM ET, 01/12/2011

More than 70 percent of U.S. covered in snow

By Jason Samenow

Washington, D.C. climbs out of snow hole

Snow cover on Jan 11 (left) and 12 (right). Snow cover decreased between the two days in the Deep South but increased over Illinois and in the mid-Atlantic. Source: National Operational Hydrologic Remote Sensing Center.

Tuesday morning, 69% of the contiguous U.S. and 49 out of 50 states had snow on the ground, but not the Washington, D.C. metro region.

Thanks in part to the East Coast storm Tuesday night, the snow covered region has risen to 71% Wednesday and now includes Washington, D.C. based on imagery and analysis from the National Weather Service (NWS).

The snow cover across the U.S. - boosted by the recent major winter storm in the Deep South - is more than double the snow cover last month.

An NWS official told Live Science (as quoted in Christian Science Monitor) that the such extensive snow cover is "not typical". However, because NWS does not have long-term U.S. snow cover records, statistical comparisons cannot be made with past years.

By Jason Samenow  | January 12, 2011; 7:00 PM ET
Categories:  Latest, U.S. Weather  
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Next: Forecast: Plenty of sun but no warmth


I think you meant 2011 in your graphs.

Posted by: authorofpoetry | January 12, 2011 7:23 PM | Report abuse

It must be winter.

Posted by: FIREDRAGON47 | January 12, 2011 7:42 PM | Report abuse


Thanks. Fixed.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | January 12, 2011 7:53 PM | Report abuse

Not that I'm biased or anything but i think this "crude illustration" is a better representation of strictly snow-cover:

Posted by: Brian-CapitalWeatherGang | January 12, 2011 7:55 PM | Report abuse


Oh, it's winter alright!

Posted by: BobMiller2 | January 12, 2011 7:56 PM | Report abuse


You're never going to let me live that "crude" comment down are you :) ?

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | January 12, 2011 8:15 PM | Report abuse

It's Sarah Palin. She put a bullseye on the weather map, and it made Gaiea soooo angry she froze the planet.

We must stop evil Republican hate speech! Ban the First Amendment! And the Second!

It's a matter of life and death!

Posted by: diesel_skins_ | January 12, 2011 8:51 PM | Report abuse

No comment about global warming! Come on people, what's up with that!

Posted by: scott16 | January 12, 2011 9:01 PM | Report abuse


Why are you discussing Sarah Palin on this blog?? And what the HECK do you mean repeal the 1st and 2nd amendments?? HOW DARE YOU suggest that we shouldn't have the right to bear arms, and have freedom of religion and speech??? Um, excuse me, but last time I checked, this isn't a communism.

Posted by: BobMiller2 | January 12, 2011 9:04 PM | Report abuse



Posted by: Brian-CapitalWeatherGang | January 12, 2011 9:13 PM | Report abuse

Doesn't seem likely, but it would be neat if somewhere around Daytona Beach picked up some snow to make it 50 of 50.

Posted by: spgass1 | January 12, 2011 9:20 PM | Report abuse

BobMiller2, calm down. Don't you recognize snark when you see it?

Posted by: natsncats | January 12, 2011 9:31 PM | Report abuse

I'm going to bed in about 30 or 40 minutes. Then it's back to work tomorrow. Sigh. I can't wait for the weekend...

Posted by: BobMiller2 | January 12, 2011 10:07 PM | Report abuse

I'm surprised DC even counts as snow-covered on today's 1/12 map. If the image represented any time after about noon today, I'd consider the snow map to show a big hole over the DC area again :(

Posted by: meteorolinguist | January 12, 2011 10:13 PM | Report abuse

I can't wait for the weekend either, even though the forecast is for nothing but barren coldness. Not even one decent sunny day. Blech.
Maybe my garden will get a little drink on MLK day.
I hear that wind out there. It's waiting to bite me in the morning.

Posted by: FIREDRAGON47 | January 12, 2011 10:17 PM | Report abuse

No comment about global warming! Come on people, what's up with that!

Posted by: scott16


Here's your comment on global warming, scott. The earth is actually bigger than the U.S., a year is actually more than a week long, and this past one tied 2005 for the hottest in history. That do it for you?

Posted by: B2O2 | January 12, 2011 10:17 PM | Report abuse

it's snowing in Hawaii?

Posted by: fedssocr | January 12, 2011 10:47 PM | Report abuse

And yet the golf meter shows 5 lines above "bad".

Posted by: shoe1 | January 12, 2011 10:54 PM | Report abuse

Oh, baby, it's cold outside.

I think we are past the tipping point, and Global Warming is on track.
The Arctic icebox is defrosting, and as the Arctic air warms and expands, it pushes further South. But the Arctic air is still so much colder than we are used to seeing here. In the US we are standing in front of the open refrigerator door, and we percieve it as being so much colder.

Wait for the boomerang in temperature when the Arctic ice is gone.

Posted by: | January 12, 2011 10:57 PM | Report abuse

Why does everyone keep saying 49 of 50 states?! Does Hawaii have snow? If not, then it's *48*. Or, 47 of the lower 48....

All morning CNN had this wrong number up. Let's not forget our non-contiguous acquisitions!! ; )

Posted by: undercover_hon | January 12, 2011 11:06 PM | Report abuse

Yes, Hawaii has snow.

Posted by: megamuphen | January 12, 2011 11:12 PM | Report abuse

Yep, on Mauna Kea they have snow. Friend of mine works at the observatory there.

Posted by: natsncats | January 12, 2011 11:26 PM | Report abuse

mountains, too

Posted by: vmax02rider | January 12, 2011 11:26 PM | Report abuse

There are 26 climate zones in the world. You can find 23 of them at the same time on the Big Island of Hawaii. That inlcudes rain forests, desert, and snow-capped volcanoes, all within 2 hours of each other by car. It's a wonderous place.

Posted by: pwharton | January 12, 2011 11:35 PM | Report abuse

BAHAHAHA gotta love the Charlottesville snow hole. :(

Posted by: cleombrota | January 13, 2011 12:29 AM | Report abuse

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Posted by: zhengee01 | January 13, 2011 1:13 AM | Report abuse

Wow... This global warming sure is C-c-c-CcoOooLlLdDDdDD!!!

Posted by: Shutterbugpete | January 13, 2011 1:36 AM | Report abuse

Look at the evidence. Last winter we broke snowfall records. This past summer we broke heat records. Now it appears as if the US is in a short term ice age.

The arctic ice has melted. Where do you think it went? Into the atmospheric system. Right now it's sitting on New York and New England. The lack of arctic ice is allowing the oceans to warm and desalinate. Millions of fish washed up dead on the Chesapeake. Global warming is here and it's affecting our environment. Ignoring it is just irresponsible and dangerous.

Posted by: mjoy | January 13, 2011 1:55 AM | Report abuse

What? Ed Hardy Bikini $ 23

It must be so cheap because 70% of America is covered in snow...

Posted by: dforce | January 13, 2011 2:05 AM | Report abuse

Don't worry about the typical winter snows of Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa, it's 75 degrees right now in Honolulu at sea level.

In the absence of a Weather Gang for Honolulu, why is it that we suddenly have so many thunderstorms? I've never seen one in the time I've lived here, but in the last couple of months there have been at least 5 that I've seen and heard (including the one passing overhead right now where the thunder and lightning has been going on for several hours!). Overactive North Pacific?

Posted by: zan20 | January 13, 2011 2:56 AM | Report abuse

Snow in Hawaii? Oddly enough, Hawaii DOES have snow in the mountains. Seems strange, huh?

From the ocean floor up, Mauna Kea is the tallest mountain on Earth, standing over 14,000 ft above sea level, sporting the highest lake in the world at over 13,000 ft. And ski trails.

Posted by: whitebeard1 | January 13, 2011 3:11 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: DAK4Blizzard | January 13, 2011 3:35 AM | Report abuse

is climate warming? maybe,even probably. Is human activity the cause? Well,the earth has gone through stages where glaciers covered parts of what is now US. So there are powerful "natural" forces also around, so who is to say the current trends are the result of our automobiles

Posted by: jrwute42 | January 13, 2011 6:57 AM | Report abuse

zan20, that's a good question. Normally cold fronts would not make it that far south. My guess is a very strong La Nina is cooling the waters enough so that the cold fronts make it.

Posted by: eric654 | January 13, 2011 7:01 AM | Report abuse

Look for the price of heating oil to go up!

Posted by: Edie3 | January 13, 2011 7:31 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: DAK4Blizzard | January 13, 2011 10:06 AM | Report abuse

Jeff Danziger in a cartoon strip last year founded a new society "Vermonters for global warming". Anyone want to join "Marylanders for global warming"? ;) In two to three months we can disband it.

Posted by: Dadmeister | January 13, 2011 10:31 AM | Report abuse

Seventy percent snow cover is good for more snow chances...unless we get a blowtorch January thaw which melts it all!

Posted by: Bombo47jea | January 13, 2011 11:40 AM | Report abuse

Yo, Global Warming deniers, there's power in the air! It takes a colossal amount of energy to raise the entire atmosphere 1 degree, and that mongo energy can easily cause more violent weather, such as floods, droughts, tornadoes, and yes, stronger flows of polar air. So bundle up and enjoy the consequences of more energetic global air movements!

Posted by: fsudia | January 14, 2011 12:53 AM | Report abuse

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