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Posted at 9:45 AM ET, 01/12/2011

Snow totals and your pictures

By Jason Samenow

Snow totals compiled by the National Weather Service Forecast Office in Sterling, Va. Note: Low reports around higher totals probably suggest they were reported while still snowing and are not final.

Snow last night fell mostly between 7 and 11 p.m. and was preceded by a period of light mixed precipitation starting around 5:30 p.m. Totals varied from as little as a dusting toward Fredericksburg to as much 3" in parts of Frederick and Howard counties. Most spots in the immediate metro area got 1-2". Reagan National Airport officially received 1", Dulles got 1.2", and BWI totaled 2.0".

We were fortunate to receive dozens of snowfall reports from around the region in this blog, on our Facebook page and via Twitter. Thanks to all of you for these reports. We were also sent some cool pictures.

I've aggregated many of them after the jump, so keep reading (if I missed your report, leave a comment, and I'll add)...

Looking onto Mt. Pleasant neighborhood of the District last night at 8 p.m. Submitted by Bennett Lipscomb

Virginia Snow Totals

0.5" Woodbridge (near Wegmans), Angela Ballesteros Davenport
0.5"* Chantilly, Jatamanzi Shauna
7/8" Falls Church, Walter-in-FallsChurch
1" Centreville, James Howell
1" Annandale, TheBorg
1"* Alexandria (Old Town), Kate Garner French
1" Alexandria (between Old Town and Mt. Vernon) bodypolitic1
1" Alexandria (Bailey's Crossroads), jochpo
1" Falls Church (Seven Corners), Laura Moske May
1" Herndon, dantebouchot
1" Merrifield, davidrwhitney
1" Prince William county (W), paulcrumlish
1" Reston (north), Leslie Bailey
1.5" Reston, TheSonOfLiberty
1-2" Leesburg, Terri Seiter Azie
2" Leesburg, tommydomingue

District Snow Totals

1" Capitol Hill, NaomiHB
1.5" Glover Park, Amanda Rose Parker
2" in upper NW, jenfieldDC

Maryland Snow Totals

Rockville, Maryland -- a little more than 1 inch! Submitted by jazzyjizz1e

1" Camp Springs, johnnierat
1" Rockville, Mara Greengrass
1"+ Rockville, jazzyjizz1e
1"+ Bethesda, kantor1125
1.25" Laytonsville, MidcenturyModern
1.4" Bethesda, samdman95
1.5" Chevy Chase, Julie Barrie Buchanan
1.5" Westminster, Brandon Oland
1.5"* Annapolis (just west of Bay Bridge), EllingtonC1
1.75" Laytonsville, dprats21
1.5-2" Damascus, Rob Slone
1.5 - 2" Edgewater (AA co.), Deborah Dutcher Wilson
2" Chevy Chase, ChevyChasePatch
2" Cloverly, MDDem2
2" Greenbelt, eileencan
2" Howard County (Phils-in-Columbia)
2" Laurel (S), megamuphen
2" Olney, ocdgirl2000
2" Silver Spring (downtown), E_Y_DUB
2" Silver Spring (SE), Murre
2.1" Takoma Park, wappledoo
2.2" Linthicum (northern Anne Arundel co.), allagar
2.5" Ellicott City, bbirnbau
2.5 Ellicott City (West Columbia/South), Kellygirl75
2.5" New Market (Frederick County), Teresa Strahlman
3" Gaithersburg, MaybeSew
3" New Market (Frederick County), Conor Nolan
3" western Howard county, Parkaykis Kaitlyn

* indicates it was still snowing at time of observation


Submitted by E_Y_DUB from Silver Spring


Submitted by raphiesaid in the District over the New York Ave. metro station


Submitted by tai_fung: "We left DC on Monday for a Maui vacation. So . . . no snow at this time. Aloha :)"


By Jason Samenow  | January 12, 2011; 9:45 AM ET
Categories:  Latest, Winter Storms  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Forecast: White & windy but dry; cold
Next: Why was there ice before snow Tues. night?


Fantastic photos - and lots of snow total reports. Thanks everyone for contributing! Great storm summary post, I believe. Hope you believe it interesting to see the look and feel of the snow across the area, also?

Posted by: Camden-CapitalWeatherGang | January 12, 2011 10:10 AM | Report abuse

Beautiful pic by tai_fung, who is rubbing it in a little bit ;-)

Posted by: natsncats | January 12, 2011 10:11 AM | Report abuse

perhaps tai_fung can go over to Mauna Loa to confirm that we have joined Hawaii among the states with snow cover.

Posted by: ah___ | January 12, 2011 10:17 AM | Report abuse

We didn't get much snow (about an inch) in Manassas, but it has left a nice skating rink to drive on in un-treated areas. Getting out of my neighborhood this morning was an adventure. I was wishing I was in tai_fung's neighborhood instead of mine. LOL.

Kim in Manassas

Posted by: ksrgatorfn1 | January 12, 2011 10:18 AM | Report abuse

Here in NYC, everything seems to have been plowed even quicker than last time. And this time, there doesn't seem to be much of the joy-riding and abandoned vehicles which prevented some streets from being cleared after the Christmas weekend storm.

But New Yorkers always need something to complain about. Last time, it was the fact that piled up snow filled all the parking spaces, and that garbage couldn't be collected for a week. This time, people are complaining that noisy plows kept them awake.

In any case, the schools are open, the airports are open, and the city is as open for business this morning as it was 24 hours after the December storm.

Posted by: Itzajob | January 12, 2011 10:19 AM | Report abuse

Why are we so dry this winter?
Not just talking snow here...when was the last time the DC area had a good soaking?
It's been a while.

Posted by: FIREDRAGON47 | January 12, 2011 10:22 AM | Report abuse


La Ninas tend to be dry around here due to lack of southern stream moisture.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | January 12, 2011 10:31 AM | Report abuse

My theory for next tuesday:

right now the track of our storms have always been a tad bit too far south and east. BUT, in chronology of forecast in the long range the models always show the potential for a hit. So my theory is that the rain maker projected for tuesday by the models will eventually shift south, just like all the others have, and give us our first 5+ storm of the year.

Rationalization is a healthy defense mechanism.

Posted by: bbirnbau | January 12, 2011 10:37 AM | Report abuse

We had just over 2 inches in Takoma Park, MD (maybe 2.1"), which looks to be in line with the Silver Spring reports.

I have to say, that layer of freezing drizzle that came down first sure made scraping the car windows fun this morning. But who am I to complain, I'm just glad we got some snow finally!

Posted by: wappledoo | January 12, 2011 10:38 AM | Report abuse

don't forget BradFinWoodbridgeVA's 9" in south carolina... unbelievable...

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | January 12, 2011 10:51 AM | Report abuse

I'll worry about next Tuesday this Sunday.

Posted by: Snowlover2 | January 12, 2011 11:00 AM | Report abuse

NWS discussion has not been updated. They usually update around 10 am. Next Tuesday should be rain. Nice to get all the salt off the road. Then we could have some snow. That would be fine.

Posted by: moo1 | January 12, 2011 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Such a typical D.C. winter in my opinion. Snowstorms going around us like we offended them or something and when big ones do hit, old man winter is on vacation and he takes the cold with him, leaving just rain. Last year was just a crazy outlier and we may never see something like that again. And if we do, cool.

Posted by: authorofpoetry | January 12, 2011 11:16 AM | Report abuse

Our good friend %$#@*&% winter wind has returned to chafe & annoy us.
I can hear it howling at the doors.
Go away!

Posted by: FIREDRAGON47 | January 12, 2011 11:29 AM | Report abuse


Are we ever going to get a 10+ inch snowstorm this year? Is it possible? And what month would that most likely happen?


Posted by: SNOWLUVER | January 12, 2011 11:31 AM | Report abuse

Typically the immediate metro area seems to get 3 to 4 10-inch plus events per decade. And those have occurred in every month from November to March at lest once, although February, I believe, is most likely to see a double digit event. We had 3 last year.

Posted by: DOG3521 | January 12, 2011 11:41 AM | Report abuse

What are the snow totals for the three airports vs. the average for this time of year? thanks

Posted by: weatherdude | January 12, 2011 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Lots of discussion lately on what is "normal" around here. Everyone knows the averages of course, but those are pulled up by years like last year. At the same time, snowless is not "normal" either. Personally, I think the median (as opposed to the mean) is the best estimate of what you might see in a "normal" winter. And that number is around 10" for DCA and 15 or 16 for IAD (Maybe CWG can confirm that for me). That's usually in the form of severl 2-4 type events and 1 or 2 5+. 6+ is rare here, a once every 2 years type thing.

So in conclusion, last year was not normal - in fact, it was probably once in a lifetime. But contrary to what the no-snow crowd states, this year isn't quite normal either - it's a good bit behind. Not to say we can't catch up - now through mid-February is prime snow season in this area in my mind.

Posted by: jahutch | January 12, 2011 11:43 AM | Report abuse

That's why I want to know how much snow we have gotten vs. the average. Are we really behind?

Posted by: weatherdude | January 12, 2011 11:47 AM | Report abuse


Could you please point me to the source of your information on how many large snow events DC gets per decade? Your figures seem high to me, but I am unsure what the number is...

Posted by: weatherdude | January 12, 2011 11:59 AM | Report abuse

Flying to Florida on 1/21. I saw a stray post about a storm for the 20th. Any truth to that? (Anything that falls on Tuesday will be cleaned up by Fri, but I am worried about a Thursday storm with a Friday AM flight.)

any thoughts?

Posted by: readerl | January 12, 2011 12:08 PM | Report abuse

here's something that says we're .8" (3.5" vs 4.3") behind "normal" for snowfall this winter. don't know if "normal" is the mean or median value.


can anybody find that graph of amounts of snow that fall on a given winter's day?

some here have spoken of february as our best snow month, but it's my general recollection that snow amounts mirror the temperature profile - which put our coldest (and snowiest) days right around jan 18th or 20th.

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | January 12, 2011 12:35 PM | Report abuse


We don't see a big snow threat in the next week (maybe a little ice next Tues, but too far out to say much), and the pattern this year is less favorable than normal for a big storm.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | January 12, 2011 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Those 10"+ numbers are from my own records which I've been keeping in Montgomery County since the 1960s. Of course, official snow totals at DCA are less and unrepresentative of the greater metro area. There are also events like the Veterans Day storm in '87 in which parts of the immediate DC area received well over 10" and other parts, well under, but probably should be counted.

Posted by: DOG3521 | January 12, 2011 1:42 PM | Report abuse


So your data indicate basically a major winter storm every two to three years? Still say that is too high. I would guess every six to seven years. That seems to be the case since I moved here in 1986, anyway...

Posted by: weatherdude | January 12, 2011 2:30 PM | Report abuse

@Walter in Falls Church,

Thanks, interesting. So we really are about where we should be, statistically, at this point for seasonal snow totals...

Posted by: weatherdude | January 12, 2011 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Here's my breakdown:
1970's: New Years 1971, Dec 1973(??)February 1979.
1980's: Feb 1983, Jan 1987 (Many locations had 2 ten-inch + storms in 4 days), Feb 1987, Nov. 1987 (East 'burbs & DC)
1990's March 1993, Jan. 1996, March 1999 (Western burbs)
2000's: Jan 2000, Feb 2003, Feb 2006, Dec 2009
2010's: Feb 2010 (2).
Again, not ALL parts of the area saw double digits in each of these storms.

Posted by: DOG3521 | January 12, 2011 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, maybe I am just thinking about DCA totals, which tend to be lower...

Posted by: weatherdude | January 12, 2011 2:56 PM | Report abuse

so here's my non-scientific observation:
good snow years tend to end in 0,3,6 or 9. looks like we need to wait 'til 2013 for our next "big one"...

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | January 12, 2011 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Now it's killing me: is that Maui looking towards Lanai or Molokai? I'm going with the latter, which would put the photographer North of Lahaina but perhaps just South of Kapalua.

Thanks for rubbing it in, tai and Jason. How to get back there . . .

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | January 12, 2011 5:15 PM | Report abuse


I would agree with DOG--once every 2-3 years, on average. I've been here for 19 years, and can recall 8 major snowstorms (over 1 foot of accumulation)--March '93, January '96 (2? not sure whether the second one totaled over a foot where I was living then--Fairfax--but it had to be close), January 2000, Feb. 2003, Dec. 2009, and February 2010 (2? I think the second one gave us 13 inches--I have a spreadsheet with it recorded but don't have access to it now). But one of the worst winter storms I experienced here was the ice storm of Feb. '99.

Posted by: markf40 | January 14, 2011 11:50 AM | Report abuse

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