Early snow, but not the earliest, Shippensburg University faculty member says

Staff Writer
Echo Pilot

The  snowfall predicted for Saturday may seem early, but it actually isn’t the earliest ever, according to Shippensburg University faculty member.

The earliest snowfall ever was 1 inch on Oct. 19, 1940 and 1972, according to Dr. Timothy Hawkins, associate professor and interim chair of the geography-earth science department.

According to Hawkins, some other significant early snowfall events from dating from 1933 include:

    * Nov 17, 1935: 6 inches

    * Nov 24-35, 1938: 11 inches

    * Nov 6-7, 1953: 16 inches

    * Nov 12, 1968: 10 inches

    * Nov 24-25, 1971: 14 inches

    * Nov 12-13, 1987: 10 inches

    * Nov 13-17, 1995: 15 inches

Hawkins said the current prediction models are calling for 5 to 8 inches of snow between Friday night and Saturday evening. The amounts may change, he said, based on the location of the rain/snow line and that a slight change in low level temperatures could alter the type of precipitation for some areas.

In addition,  residual energy stored in the ground from the summer will likely cause a good deal of the snowfall to melt, especially on the warmer roads.

He does expect any snow that falls will be wet and heavy and, couple that with the large amount of “leaves still on the trees and the potential for damage exists.”