Five Questions/Answers

2016-06-10 20:01:52.000 – Ryan Knapp, Weather Observer/Staff Meteorologist

 

As you may have seen (or heard through word of mouth), the summit received a fresh coating of snow, sleet, and ice over the past few days.  As a result, this has spawned a few common questions. So I figured I would address a few of them here:
 
1. Has it ever snowed in June before? Yes, numerous times. In fact the summit has measured an inch or more of snow for every month of the year. Since starting work here in Dec 2005, I personally have seen snowfall in June 2006, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2016. The most snow seen on the summit during the month of June occurred June 14-18, 1959 where 8.1 inches fell. So our 1.8 inches since the 8th doesn’t seem as bad in comparison.
 
2. It’s June, it’s not supposed to be cold is it? Yes, it can still get below freezing even in June on the higher elevations. Daily record lows for the rest of June vary between the teens and 20s (Fahrenheit). So it has been and can still get below freezing for the rest of the month.
 
3. Will this be the last snow you see until fall? Maybe…? As previously stated, we have measured at least an inch of snow for every month of the year. Of all the months, July is the least likely to see snow. And while June, July, and August don’t see totals anywhere near the winter months, they are still prime candidates (especially June as pointed out in #1). So improbable but not impossible. In fact, the potential is there for another round of freezing and frozen precipitation at the start of the next workweek. So it is worth keeping an eye on the Higher Summits Forecast so you don’t get caught off guard.
 
4. Will it melt before (insert event/day here)? Yes (in most circumstances)! Snow and ice this time of year don’t stick around for long. Temperatures will once again warm, the days are longer meaning plenty of available sunshine minutes, and the angle of the sun is significantly higher than winter months. Visitors on Thursday might have said “Snow in June! What the…!”, visitors today might have said “Hmm, look, there’s still some snow up here.” but by Saturday afternoon, visitors will say, “It snowed? Where’d it go?” That’s how much it can change day by day up here.
 
5. Is the (insert operation here) open today? We operate independently from the various operations up here, so it is best to check out the relevant pages you are interested in to get the information directly from them rather than second hand through us. The Mt Washington Auto Road information can be found HERE, The Cog’s information can be found HERE, and the NH State Park information can be found HERE. Trails rarely close (the exception might be washout or hazardous conditions) and most of their conditions can be found HERE.

Undercast conditions with remaining June snow

 

Ryan Knapp, Weather Observer/Staff Meteorologist

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