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Could 3ft of snow ever fall to low levels (below 150m) in Britain?


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Posted
  • Location: Wrexham, North East Wales 80m asl
  • Weather Preferences: Snow and thunderstorms
  • Location: Wrexham, North East Wales 80m asl

    3cm would be a miracle right now...trouble is there is so much waterlogging that it couldn't settle!

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    Posted
  • Location: Chester
  • Location: Chester

    The deepest levels of undrifted snow recorded in the UK includes one very close to you Carl.
    65 inches at Ruthin and 83 inches in County Durham, both in March 1947.

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    Posted
  • Location: Mytholmroyd, West Yorks.......
  • Weather Preferences: Hot & Sunny, Cold & Snowy
  • Location: Mytholmroyd, West Yorks.......

    Just imagine the results of last winters deluges had we been overlain by a cold continental airmass in Jan/Feb?

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    Posted
  • Location: Blackburn - 180m asl
  • Location: Blackburn - 180m asl

    The deepest levels of undrifted snow recorded in the UK includes one very close to you Carl.

    65 inches at Ruthin and 83 inches in County Durham, both in March 1947.

     

    So from those figures not only is it possible, it has actually happened. Although 83 inches would literally be snowing us all in, you'd have to dig tunnels the heights of doors, sounds amazing. Although, my guess is someone mismeasured it...

     

    Just imagine the results of last winters deluges had we been overlain by a cold continental airmass in Jan/Feb?

     

    You make a fair point there, it would of been pretty good.

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    Posted
  • Location: Morecambe
  • Location: Morecambe

    Just imagine the results of last winters deluges had we been overlain by a cold continental airmass in Jan/Feb?

     

    But it does not work as simple as that as if we had a cold continental airmass over us then yes there be leading edge snow but either the mild air wins which in turn will turn things back to rain or the cold wins and the lows get deflected.

     

    I guess 3ft is possible on higher ground that is exposed to a Northerly wind, then an Easterly one followed by a frontal snow event but at lower levels, highly unlikely but nothing is ever impossible as far as the weather is concerned. 

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    Posted
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl

    3ft = 90 cms which is a very high total indeed.. I don't think there are many examples of places at the low level you mention 150 metres and below having experienced a single fall of such totals. Jan 1945 in S Wales did though.

     

    However, there have been a number of snowfalls which I imagine may have produced totals not too far off this mark in some places - examples evidenced are -

     

    4-8 Dec 1882 - snowstorm northern England and southern Scotland, a metre reported but I suspect will have been in high parts only.

    9-13 March 1891 - blizzard in the SW, average depth of fall 24 inches, so some places could have seen 3 feet.

    February 1895 - heavy fall of snow in SW Scotland, Isle of Man and NW England, 75 cms in some places..

    23-26 Feb 1933 - Harrogate and Huddersfield saw 75 cms.

    26 Jan 1940 - an infamous snowfall, much of Yorkshire, Derbyshire and Cheshire saw up to 2 feet.

    26-27 March 1941 - Tain reported 30 to 35 inches!!! must check this event out, very late in the season for such totals..

    25-29 Jan 1945 - now this one cuts the mustard.. Penarth had a level depth of 40 inches!!!!!!! - a woppa of a snowstorm.

    Jan 1955 - NE Scotland saw 2 feet snowfalls even along the coast at Aberdeen.

    4 Feb 1963 produced 20 inches in Belfast.

    Dec 1968 - East Dereham had 20 inches , not sure if this was from one event or cumulative total.

    17/18 Feb 1978 - SW England and Dorset saw 2 feet.

    Jan 1982 - 28 inches in Carmarthen, 24 inches in Newport.

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    Posted
  • Location: Stockport
  • Location: Stockport

    Just imagine the results of last winters deluges had we been overlain by a cold continental airmass in Jan/Feb?

     

    If our winters were 3/4/5C colder, yet our prevailing winds still came from the same direction, we would likely be a very snowy country, maybe akin to Hokkaido in Japan. That's why the Highlands got pasted last winter yet it was too mild pretty much everywhere else. We've got the moisture on lockdown, but are let down by the temperatures.

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    Posted
  • Location: Wildwood, Stafford 104m asl
  • Weather Preferences: obviously snow!
  • Location: Wildwood, Stafford 104m asl

    I would think possible, but only for say Kent, if a beast lasts long enough for snow showers to pile up

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    Posted
  • Location: Irlam
  • Location: Irlam

    Hawick during the great snow of early December 1882 was reported to have had a metre of snow. That would just fit in this category.

    The snowfalls of late April 1908 were staggering in the south. One report says Abingdon received 27 inches of snow!

    I would say it is about possible if you get a developing low like early January 2010 that becomes almost stationary.

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    Posted
  • Location: Blackburn - 180m asl
  • Location: Blackburn - 180m asl

    Hawick during the great snow of early December 1882 was reported to have had a metre of snow. That would just fit in this category.

    The snowfalls of late April 1908 were staggering in the south. One report says Abingdon received 27 inches of snow!

    I would say it is about possible if you get a developing low like early January 2010 that becomes almost stationary.

     

    Yeah I think you're right either a greenland high type situation, a stationary low or beast from the east but all of these would need to be outliers in terms of how long they lasted.

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    Posted
  • Location: Leeds/Bradford border, 185 metres above sea level, around 600 feet
  • Location: Leeds/Bradford border, 185 metres above sea level, around 600 feet

    From a single fall, your only chance would be a wave forming along a stalled front moving south. The wave would probably have to be orientated as going NNE from somewhere like Southampton so the eastern side of England would see sustained heavy snow (rain for the SE).

     

    My heaviest fall is 21cm in Jan 10 though we had 40cm in Jan 95.

     

    It should be possible to get a cumulative total of several feet. We had 29cm on the ground on 6th Jan 10 so that all fell in 19 days. We had 23cm on the ground in Dec 2nd 10 so that all fell in 9 days. Jan 13 saw a 10 day spell in which i confirmed 16cm but missed the final front which others in Yorkshire claimed dropped as much as 12cm (so potentially 28cm total). We've also had a 31 day and 25 day spell where the snow did not melt.

     

    So yeah it's possible to reach that total but you'd need amazing sustained synoptics.  

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    Posted
  • Location: Macclesfield
  • Location: Macclesfield

    January 1963 saw totals close to three foot in lowland Cheshire. around Alderley Edge and Wilmslow. 1979 saw 14 inches in Alderley Edge. I would not he surprised if totals were similar in 1947 but I don't remember that although my father does as he was a market gardener trying to dig crops!

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    Posted
  • Location: halifax 125m
  • Weather Preferences: extremes the unusual and interesting facts
  • Location: halifax 125m

    There is no question that accumulated levels in upland areas of northern England and Wales have already been proven.Southern England usually gets its worst winters from the east and winters such as '79,63 and 47 would have given a good depth but probable a lump short of the 3 ft we are talking about although 1947 may have given close figures in some areas.There is every chance it will have happened in the 17th to 19th centuries as these were times blessed with much harsher winters with arguably more snowfall.If Cross fell was a hill that held snow for 10 months of the year in these times then it is reasonable to think southern Britain had much more snow also with winters such as 1634,1740 and 1814 being likely contenders!

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    Posted
  • Location: Edmonton Alberta(via Chelmsford, Exeter & Calgary)
  • Weather Preferences: Sunshine and 15-25c
  • Location: Edmonton Alberta(via Chelmsford, Exeter & Calgary)

    when i was living in Edmonton the winter 2010/11 the city received over 8ft of snow twas the snowiest winter for 40 years. The snow piles on the side of my driveway were close to 10 feet high by the end of March.

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    Assuming that this is inspired by the recent snowfall in the US such as for Boston and if we are considering a single event, it would require similar synoptics. Cold alone is unlikely to do it with a 'lake effect' over the warm seas - 1987 saw 52cm at East Malling in Kent over several days. As we're considering low ground that should rule out persistent orographic forcing.

    Jan 1945 brought 30 inches to Cardiff by the 25th, though that was from a number of small depressions so not sure whether this counts as one event, but this is getting into the right territory - monthly Met Office report http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/media/pdf/k/h/Jan1945.pdf

    It would probably need a depression slowly moving into cold air with a persistent warm moist conveyor above, which January 1982 came close to providing - Meto report http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/media/pdf/k/9/Jan1982.pdf

     

    Knocker posted some soundings from the US storm a few days back - https://forum.netweather.tv/topic/81281-model-banter-moans-and-ramps-autumnwinter-201415/page-149#entry3142357

     

    Looking at the Chatham chart in particular shows the moist Atlantic air forced aloft (the virtual temperatures also showed some additional instability) with a precipitable water total of 14.8 mm at that time. Temperatures are below freezing throughout, but deep cold would mean less moisture and less snow so the 500-1000mb thickness is only 536.4 dam.

    Compare this to Jan 6th 2010 over here for example and the Nottingham thickness was a seemingly impressive 518.3 but preciptable water was only 8.26mm at that time (and dried afterwards) hence this situation would be unlikely to fit the bill.

     

    http://weather.uwyo.edu/cgi-bin/sounding?region=europe&TYPE=GIF%3ASKEWT&YEAR=2010&MONTH=01&FROM=0600&TO=0600&STNM=03354

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    Posted
  • Location: Dundee
  • Weather Preferences: Snow, thunderstorms, gales. All extremes except humidity.
  • Location: Dundee

    Copied from the historic weather section. This one was missed in the list on the first page. All the places in Perthshire such as Blairgowrie, Dunkeld and Kenmore reporting around 30 inch depths are well under 150 mtrs asl. 

    A very widespread event.

    Thanks to Weather History for the report. Oops Meant to just copy the link

     

    https://forum.netweather.tv/topic/52397-from-128c-to-175-inches-of-snow-in-4-days/

    From 12.8c To 17.5 Inches Of Snow In 4 Days...... - Historic Weather - Netweather Community Forums.html

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    Copied from the historic weather section. This one was missed in the list on the first page. All the places in Perthshire such as Blairgowrie, Dunkeld and Kenmore reporting around 30 inch depths are well under 150 mtrs asl. 

    A very widespread event.

    Thanks to Weather History for the report. Oops Meant to just copy the link

     

    https://forum.netweather.tv/topic/52397-from-128c-to-175-inches-of-snow-in-4-days/

     

    Can't help but wonder if hills to the southeast helped these locations with a southeast flow, but not enough to dry the air out, impressive stuff nonetheless.

    Amongst the nationwide reports of a foot or more, readers of the Northwest England regional thread will appreciate the report thrown in of

     

     

     

    Knotty Ash: 2 inches
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