Before and After the First March Thaw

2012-03-09 17:26:37.000 – Mike Carmon,  Weather Observer/Meteorologist


It was beginning to look like March would save this peculiar winter.

During the first five days of March, the summit crew measured a total of 19 inches of snow. Normally this wouldn’t be a particularly momentous figure, but considering the scarcity of the white stuff this season, it was encouraging to see this much snow to kick off the month of March.

However, the powers that be subsequently decided that this was unacceptable, and as a result, the snowy five-day period has been followed by temperatures averaging 10-20 degrees above normal on the summit, drastically reducing our snowpack.

Luckily, the clear conditions we experienced up until yesterday afternoon have allowed the webcams to catch the metamorphosis of the summit from purely white winter wonderland back to patches of snow and ice interrupted by rocky terrain.

The first view here is from our North View camera, taken on Tuesday at 2:45 PM, immediately following the new 19 inches of snowfall.

The next view here is from the Presidentials webcam, which displays the majestic view of Mt. Washington from the Crawford Notch side, also taken on Tuesday at 2:45 PM.

Fast forward two days now…

On Wednesday: The high temperature was 34F, and the daily average temperature of 23F was 12 degrees above normal.

On Thursday: The high temperature was 37F. Temperatures did not drop below freezing until 11PM, resulting in a 23-hour thaw.

The first Thursday view here is from our North View camera, taken on Thursday at 2:45 PM.

The next Thursday view here is from the Presidentials webcam, taken on Thursday at 2:45 PM.

We’ve returned back to normal today, with temperatures in the single digit numbers after a strong cold frontal passage last night. However, the prognosis for a wintry March is not looking good after this weekend, with temperatures quickly moderating back up into the 30s by overnight Sunday. Thereafter, models are predicting probable high temps in excess of 35 degrees Monday through Thursday on the summit.


Mike Carmon,  Weather Observer/Meteorologist

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