The Blizzard of 2010

Springfield Travel Blog

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Overnight lull

A few more small snows fell around Washington since that pre-Christmas weekend storm. The weekend of January 30-31 saw about three inches. Not bad to shovel on Sunday afternoon. Then, overnight Tuesday-Wednesday February 2-3 brought two inches of powdery snow. I was taking the train in to work on Wednesday anyway, so had my car cleared off by 7:30 a.m. But the weather forecasters were already talking. Another monster snowstorm was due February 5-6. Thursday morning it was forecast to be 15-20 inches. Then, 20-24 inches by the evening news. Finally, 24-36 inches was forecast. Would this be the one to break the record?

Again, you must understand that Washington does not normally experience heavy winter snows.

Saturday morning
This one has been unusual and another storm was moving in. The state highway departments had already exceeded their snow removal budgets. Schools are about out of built-in snow days. No one likes to close government offices. The storm was to begin by mid-day Friday. I found my workplace was on a staggered four-hour early dismissal and I was able to leave at Noon. Snow was falling by the time I reached home, but wasn't yet sticking to the roads. That began around 6:00 p.m. when the storm moved in in earnest. Forecasters described the circular pattern of the storm, terming it a "meterological bomb". After the system swept over an area, it rotated back around to revisit its previous path. A "Snowmageddon" said many! 

After a Midnight lull, snow was still falling steadily by 7:30 a.

Work to do
m. Saturday.  Around my neighborhood it indeed was looking like the December storm! Remote TV crews reported in from the across region. The Smithsonian musuems and the monuments and memorials in Washington were closed for the weekend. Flights had been cancelled at BWI, National, and Dulles. (Roofs of two general aviation hangar at Dulles caved in.) Drivers were advised to stay off the roads. Metro was not operating trains on above ground lines. Amtrak had cancelled intercity trains. (A great travel memory I have is leaving Chicago on a train during a severe snowstorm when the only transportation operating was Amtrak!) This time the snow was wet and heavy, not like the light powdery snow of December. Tree branches were weighted down and there was danger of branches snapping power lines.
Snowmageddon!
(About 175,000 customers were without power in the region.)

There was another lull at Noon when I started shoveling out to the driveway. (Drew and Julia are now back at university, so it's Susan and I this time!) I measured 19 inches on the driveway before the storm cycled back and snow again fell in earnest. Twenty-one inches accumulated by mid-afternoon. On the TV, reporters were fascinated with a mass afternoon snowball fight that assembled at Dupont Circle in the District. By the time the snow moved out at 5:00 p.m., it had snowed for 30 hours. Snow reports varied from 22 to 26 inches. VDOT reported main roads in Northern Virginia will not be clear until Monday evening and neighohood streets not until Tuesday enveing when antoher snowstorm is due.

On Sunday mornng the sun was out. Time to shovel! The offiical reading for Washington, DC, was 24.9 inches (63.25 cm), making it the fourth largest snow on record.

 

jethanad says:
Hi TB,

Thanks for the report, keep safe, keep cash and a full tank of gasoline
Posted on: Feb 12, 2010
Africancrab says:
This is why I love Arizona.
Posted on: Feb 10, 2010
reikunboy says:
I saw this all on the news in Japan, Amazing. I'm wodering how long it will take before things are back to normal if no more snow falls
Posted on: Feb 07, 2010
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Overnight lull
Overnight lull
Saturday morning
Saturday morning
Work to do
Work to do
Snowmageddon!
Snowmageddon!
Weighted branches
Weighted branches
The storm comes back around
The storm comes back around
Afternoon whiteout
Afternoon whiteout
Stuck truck
Stuck truck
21 inches (53 cm) on our driveway
21 inches (53 cm) on our driveway
Clearning at sunset
Clearning at sunset
Springfield
photo by: Zagnut66