Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Precipitation Totals for December 2008

Precipitation totals were recorded daily at our home (Station MI-BN-3) on Crescent Lake near Buchanan, Michigan, following protocols established by CoCoRaHS (the Community Collaborative Rain, Hail, and Snow Network).

Precipitation Summary:
  • Totals.—Measurable amounts of precipitation (i.e., ≥0.01 inches) in the form of rain or snow fell on 77 percent (24) of 31 days, with a total accumulation (water equivalency) of 3.65 inches (0.12 inches/day, or 0.15 inches/day with measurable precipitation).

  • Rainfall.—Moisture in the form of rain or a rain/snow mix was recorded on 9 days with a total accumulation of 1.82 inches attributed solely to rain (0.06 inches/day, 0.20 inches/day with rain or a rain/snow mix). A freezing rain that fell on the morning of the 26th created severe icing conditions on area roads.

  • Snowfall.—Precipitation in the form of snow was recorded on 22 days, with measurable accumulations on 18 days totaling 28.9 inches (0.93 inches/day, 1.31 inches/day with snow, and 1.61 inches/day with measurable snow); the water equivalency from new snow was 2.88 inches as measured from the rain gauge (0.099 inches/1.0 inch of snow) versus 2.96 inches as measured from a core sample taken from a snowboard (0.102 inches/1.0 inch of snow). The highest 1-day total was 5.0 inches on the 22nd.

  • Snow Cover and Snow Depths.—The areal extent of snow cover was 50 percent or more on 27 days, and 100 percent on 26 days. Average snow depth on the 27 days with 50 percent or more snow cover ranged from 0.5 to 10.0 inches (on the 22nd), with a median of 3.0 inches. The amount of water on the ground in the form of snow or ice ranged from 0.03 to 1.94 inches (on the 23rd), with a median of 0.43 inches. On average, each inch of snow on the ground (new and old combined) yielded 0.18 inches of water (range 0.02 to 0.46).
  • Comparisons:
  • At the official weather station in South Bend, Indiana (located 12 miles SE of this station), the precipitation total for the month (3.79 inches) was 23 percent above the norm of 3.09 inches. By contrast, total snowfall (16.8 inches) was 12.5 percent below the norm of 19.2 inches.

  • The 30-year (1951-1980) mean December precipitation at Niles, Michigan (located 4.5 miles ENE of this station) is 3.18 inches, while the mean December snowfall for the same period is 15.8 inches.
  • Temperature, Relative Humidity, and Dew Point (at 7:00 AM):
  • Temperature.—High (51 on 27th), Median 22, Low (2 on 22nd). Freezing or sub-freezing temperatures were recorded on 27 days.

  • Relative Humidity.—High (99 on 11th), Median 74, Low (51 on 7th).

  • Dew Point Temperature.—High (47 on 27ty), Median 14, Low (-6 on 21st).
  • Previous Reports for 2009 Water Year: October 2008, November 2008.

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