Six weeks ago it looked like the 2012-2013 winter season would blow right past average snowfall, at least in southern and central Indiana. Now it appears that all of the heavy snow may have come in one major big hit – the day-after-Christmas blizzard.
As of last count, northern and central Indiana are generally running below normal on total snow accumulation. Southern Indiana may be above normal, depending upon the location, because of the amount received in that one single snow in December.
At last count in Indianapolis, the official total was 18 inches. Average is 24 to 26 inches, depending upon which record book you believe. Technically, there is still more than three weeks before winter officially ends and spring begins on the calendar. We could still see March and even early April snow. Sometimes they are light, and if not they usually melt quickly because temperatures return to normal for the period once the storm clears.
However, the averages weathermen use are based on what they call "climatological winter." Instead of running by the season on the calendar, it runs from Dec. 1 through Feb. 28. So at midnight on Feb. 28, the snow counter stops clicking for this winter as far as climatologists are concerned.
That's also the time when the Beck's winter seed giveaway contest will end. Entries were due Jan.15. Winners will be tabulated as soon as final data is available, hopefully soon after March 1. Contestants were asked to guess snow totals at Indianapolis, South Bend and Evansville. The person closest to the overall number wins. The top three finishers get prizes, including seed from Beck's Hybrids.
While it once looked like some of the early entries with higher snow totals would win, that is now in jeopardy. What this winter has done is follow the pattern predicted by the Indiana State Climatologist's Office. Predictions early on were for a very volatile, up and down wither with cold and warm, dry and stormy swings. That's exactly what has unfolded to this point in Indiana this winter.
More coming? Will you be seeing more snow flakes, or has winter about run its course? You will soon find out.