Well here we are close to Christmas and it looks like there might actually be snow! I know I know you’re saying, “WHAT!?!?! Are you crazy?”. I like snow though. Please be aware that I said I liked SNOW. I didn’t say I liked the cold, I said I liked snow. i know they go had in hand, but it doesn’t have to be -18°F for there to be snow. As a matter of fact…
Is it ever too cold to snow?
|No, it can snow even at incredibly cold temperatures as long as there is some source of moisture and some way to lift or cool the air. It is true, however, that most heavy snowfalls occur with relatively warm air temperatures near the ground – typically 15°F or warmer since air can hold more water vapor at warmer temperatures.|
When is it too warm to snow? How does snow form if the ground temperature is above freezing?
|Snow forms when the atmospheric temperature is at or below freezing (0 Celsius or 32 Fahrenheit) and there is a minimum amount of moisture in the air. If the ground temperature is at or below freezing, of course the snow will reach the ground.
However, the snow can still reach the ground when the ground temperature is above freezing if the conditions are just right. In this case, snowflakes will begin to melt as they reach this warmer temperature layer; the melting creates evaporative cooling which cools the air immediately around the snow flake.This cooling retards melting. As a general rule, though, snow will not form if the groud temperature is 5 degrees Celsius (41 deg Fahrenheit).
I love the internet…
Those little facts are from FAQ at The National Snow and Ice Data Center: http://www.nsidc.org/snow/faq.html
I didn’t even know there was such a thing… I love new things!