Sound Off

Sound Off: Snow melt

How many inches of precipitation did last month’s snow amount to?

It takes 15 inches of snow in northeastern Kansas to equal one inch of liquid water, according to Brian Fuchs, a Nebraska climatologist who specializes in drought conditions. The Lawrence area received about 17 inches of snow, so that works out to just over one inch of liquid water.


ComeOnMannnnnnn 5 years, 2 months ago

A typical ratio is 10 inches of snow per inch of water, but when the snow is wet, or mixes with freezing rain or sleet at times, the ratio may be much lower, around 3-5 inches for an inch of water. I think this snow was a little better than 15/1

Ken Lassman 5 years, 2 months ago

I agree--the moisture content was definitely more, particularly the second snow, as evidenced by the fact that the temperature was above freezing the whole time, meaning much of what came down as snow melted as it landed. I'd say that there was closer to 2 inches of precip. out of the two events--you could check with the Topeka NWS for more specific estimates.

Jake Esau 5 years, 2 months ago

Check out the reports on where the reporters often will actually melt the snow content in their rain gauges to see the actual moisture content equivalent.

Ken Lassman 5 years, 2 months ago

Very cool--thanks for the link! I checked 3 data collectors in Lawrence from that site and the precipitation equivalent ranged from 1.31 to 1.87 inches of precipitation. Are you a cocorahs data collector? Looks like you can become one by taking the online training at that site.

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