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Posted at 12:30 PM ET, 01/ 3/2011

Top weather story in 2010: Record snow or heat?

By Jason Samenow

Ian just posted a comprehensive recap of the Washington D.C.'s 2010 weather extremes. Clearly, the record snow and heat emerge as the top weather stories locally. (On the national to global scale, the Weather Channel ranked heat as the biggest national/international weather story in 2010, with Snowmageddon #6 in its top 10 list. )

If I had to develop criteria for "ranking" weather events, the criteria would be how remarkable (i.e. how rare, or statistically unusual), impactful and memorable the events were.

In light of those criteria, vote in the poll below and feel free to justify your choice in the comment area...

By Jason Samenow  | January 3, 2011; 12:30 PM ET
Categories:  Latest, Polls  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: D.C.'s wild weather ride in 2010
Next: The first sunrise of 2011


It is hot every summer, and heat doesn't really inconvenience anyone (except your pocketbook when the electric bill shows up!). Snowmageddon, on the other hand, was a gigantic pain in the rear. I realized how much of a snow hater I was this weekend after going to NJ and walking on inadequately shoveled sidewalks..yuck!

Posted by: nativetexan2 | January 3, 2011 12:50 PM | Report abuse

It's a landslide!

Posted by: Brian-CapitalWeatherGang | January 3, 2011 3:30 PM | Report abuse

I think that the disruption the snow caused relative to the heat is what sticks in everyone's mind and what is driving the results. Heat also is not visual like snow.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | January 3, 2011 3:59 PM | Report abuse

You have to ask??????

Posted by: FIREDRAGON47 | January 3, 2011 4:23 PM | Report abuse

Both are dangerous, but I think we are just used to dealing with heat around here, whereas we aren't used to and don't have the tools to deal with that kind of snow.

Posted by: SouthsideFFX | January 3, 2011 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Surprised it's not a little closer. Snow is definitely the easy answer and, of the two, least likely to be reproduced anytime soon. Maybe the fact that I lost A/C for the hottest stretch swayed me but I'd lean heat being more of a story myself..

Posted by: Ian-CapitalWeatherGang | January 3, 2011 5:11 PM | Report abuse

nativetexan2 is right. We get heat every year. Is there really much of a difference between 90° and 100°? Especially when there's humidity. Snowmageddon, on the other hand, caused massive, massive disruptions. On my street, all my neighbors and I spent days shoveling out. Not to mention all the people that were seriously injured during the blizzard. I don't know how heat can even be compared to Snowmageddon.

P.S. nativetexan2: I'm also a native of Texas... Houston to be exact. My family has lived there for generations, so I'm used to the heat! :)

Posted by: BobMiller2 | January 3, 2011 5:15 PM | Report abuse

To me, the heat was a total non-story. Yes, it was hot...but it's always hot in the summer. It was a little more intense and lasted a little longer, but it really wasn't that 'extreme' from my perspective.

The snow, however, was very much out of the ordinary in its magnitude. So I vote for the snow.

Posted by: scott_bradford | January 3, 2011 5:26 PM | Report abuse

As a native New Englander (one who uses the blizzard of February '78 as a benchmark), the snow was fun and beautiful, but not amazing. The heat, on the other hand, sucked every bit of life out of my garden, me, my cats, my checking account (since so much money had to flow to Pepco for AC). It just went on and on and on and on and on...from the weirdly hot spring to the hideously hot summer to the weirdly hot autumn.

Posted by: stephanie20 | January 3, 2011 6:03 PM | Report abuse

I'd have to throw my hat in the ring for Snowmageddon too - being a DC native, I'm used to the heat (was even taking my walks outside except when it was really really hot) but the snow... ah, the snow... :)

Posted by: MKoehl | January 3, 2011 10:06 PM | Report abuse

DC's heat index goes well above 100 every summer...the fact that it was hitting 112 at points made it feel worse, but wasn't that unusual.

Three snowstorms with over two feet of accumulation, however, was a Big Deal.

Posted by: curmudgeon31 | January 4, 2011 12:03 AM | Report abuse

There was record heat? Didn't notice.

What I did notice was the ridiculous amount of snow and how long it took for it to melt off.

Usually a DC snow storm is followed by a few 50 degree days making flooding the main story. But not last winter. It seemed more like we had record cold.

Posted by: HughJassPhD | January 4, 2011 8:43 AM | Report abuse

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