Weather Dude Fun Facts:
Almost every place in the United States has seen snow. Only the Florida Keys has remained flurry-free.
The most snow ever to fall in one winter was at Mount Baker in Washington State. In the winter of 1998-1999, 1, 140 inches fell, almost the height of the Statue of Liberty from head to toe.
Rochester New York is the snowiest large city in the United States, averaging 94 inches of snow every year.
More snow falls each year in southern Canada and the northern U.S. than at the North Pole!
Depending on air temperature, the same amount of moisture in one inch of rain could equal anywhere from two inches of wet slushy snow to as much as 40 inches of dry fluffy snow.
Snowflakes form when water vapor freezes into ice crystals in cold clouds.
The ice crystals attract cooled water droplets to form various shapes. They get
heavy and fall. If the air is cold enough, the snow falls all the way to the earth
without melting. If the ground is freezing, the snowflakes stick to the
ground. Go here to see how air temperature creates other kinds
Have you noticed that there are many different shapes of snowflakes? That is because a snowflake is usually made of many different kinds of snow crystals, and the shape of a snow crystal depends a lot on the temperature at which it forms. For example, at temperatures from 25 to 32 degrees F, the crystals are shaped like thin plates. At temperatures between 20 and 25 degrees F they look more like needles and at 15-20 degrees F they resemble hollow columns. Usually the colder the temperature, the smaller the crystals.
As the crystals fall from the cold clouds, they bump into other crystals and freeze together, making even more shapes. This is one reason why it's so hard to have two snowflakes exactly alike. In fact, in air right at the freezing mark, several snowflakes may stick together, forming large clumps of flakes that may melt as they hit the ground.
Snow photographs by Wilson A. Bentley ("Snowflake Bentley") of Jericho, VT
Snow is one kind of weather that people can duplicate. Go here to see how ski resorts make snow for skiing.
ęCopyright 2005 Nick Walker/Small Gate Media