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Storm brings regional total greater than last year

FINGER LAKES—Up until the storm last week, this winter looked to be behind last winter in snowfall.
Dave Nicosia, hydrometeorologist technician for the National Weather Service in Binghamton, said this year’s winter was close to “normal” for snowfall, but after the storm last Thursday and Friday, this winter has now had more snowfall than last year. He said it added in an average of 20 inches across the area. Nicosia described the storm itself as the “biggest in three years.”
Nicosia said thus far this winter, the Finger Lakes region (which includes Ithaca and Corning) has experienced 73 inches of snow total. He said this is close to last year, which had 70.6 inches.
However, Gary Sands, weather watcher in Penn Yan, explains micro-climates within one area can create big differences in snowfall. He explained the east side of Keuka Lake can get 50 percent less snowfall than the west side of the lake.
The Northeast Regional Climate Center at Cornell University, said the average snowfall this year for Mecklenburg, Schuyler County, as of Monday, March 1, was 76.5 inches. The average snowfall for Mecklenburg for the last 10 years was 89.3 inches.
Nicosia added that, minus the recent storm, the two winters for the region were similar in how snow accumulated. He explained that last year there was no real big storm and the snow built up over time in two to three inch increments. Nicosia added this winter looked to be the same, and would have been about 20 inches behind last year if not for the storm.
This winter also had a tighter range of temperatures, at least as of the end of February. Nicosia said the normal high temperature for 2010 has been 35 degrees and the normal low has been 15 degrees. In 2009 at the end of February, the high was 41 degrees and the low was 11 degrees.
Nicosia added he expects there to be more snow yet.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if we get more,” he said. Nicosia added he doesn’t expect a major thaw in the first week of March.”

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