2010 Christmas Day Snowfall

 

A surface low in the northern Gulf of Mexico along with an upper level disturbance moving southeastward from the Great Plains contributed to an observation of heavy snowfall on Christmas Day, 2010.  The snowfall blanketed much of northern and central Alabama.  Some locations saw the first White Christmas on record, while others just missed out on a White Christmas.  See the map below for the preliminary totals gathered from Co-Op Observers, CoCoRaHS observers, and Local Storm Reports.

 
 

The snow first began throughout northwestern Alabama early on Christmas Morning.  Locations such as Byrd and Hamilton in Marion County received between 2 to 2.5 inches, while areas just east of Hackleburg recieved as much as 4 inches.  Locations in the Huntsville County Warning Area were the big winners on snowfall, with most locations around the City of Huntsville receiving up to 3 inches of snowfall, and up to 6.5 inches of snowfall atop Monte Sano Mountain by a CoCoRaHS observer.

As the precipitation developed over central Alabama later that morning, higher elevations saw all snow at the onset.  Many areas to the east of the City of Birmingham received up to 2 inches of snowfall.  The highest elevations in east Alabama saw up to 4 inches, which was reported from atop Mt. Cheaha.  The Birmingham metro area saw the precipitation begin as rainfall for much of the morning, where up to 3 tenths of an inch of rainfall was reported at the Birmingham Airport and the Shelby County Airport.  See the daily precipitation plot that presents the liquid equivalent of all precipitation on Christmas Day here.

The wet, warmer ground conditions in the City of Birmingham and points southward along the Interstate 65 corridor contributed to most of the snow melting as it made contact with the ground.  Only a trace of snow was recorded at the Birmingham International Airport with no snow to measure on the snowboard.  The City of Birmingham has therefore still never recorded a White Christmas since records have been kept, which is nearly 100 years.  You can view the White Christmas history throughout central Alabama by clicking here.

As the precipitation continued to move southeastward through the evening hours, many locations across southeast Alabama observed the rain change over to snow, where areas as far south as Auburn University observed an inch of snowfall.  Areas as far south as Evergreen in Conecuh County, Eufaula in Barbour County, and Ozark in Henry County observed a trace of snowfall as well.

Listed below are snowfall reports across the state, from the highest amounts to the lowest:

 

 

LOCATION

COUNTY

SNOWFALL (INCHES)

Huntsville 5.8 ENE

MADISON

6.5

Monte Sano Mt.

MADISON

6.0

Meridianville

MADISON

4.5

Jacksonville 2.8 SE

CALHOUN

4.0

Florence 1.2 S

LAUDERDALE

4.0

Phil Campbell

FRANKLIN

4.0

Ider

DEKALB

4.0

Valley Head

DEKALB

4.0

Peeks Corner

DEKALB

4.0

Vinemont

CULLMAN

4.0

Tessner

MARION

4.0

Muscadine

CLEBURNE

4.0

Mt. Cheaha

CLEBURNE

4.0

Athens

LIMESTONE

3.8

Holly Tree

JACKSON

3.8

Moulton

LAWRENCE

3.5

Harvest

MADISON

3.5

Madison

MADISON

3.5

Owens Crossroads

MADISON

3.5

Paint Rock

JACKSON

3.5

Boaz

MARSHALL

3.5

West Point

CULLMAN

3.5

Littleville

COLBERT

3.0

French Mill

MADISON

3.0

Scottsboro

JACKSON

3.0

Stevenson

JACKSON

3.0

Hackleburg

MARION

3.0

Attalla

ETOWAH

3.0

Sand Rock

CHEROKEE

3.0

Anniston

CALHOUN

3.0

Hampton Cove

MADISON

2.9

Hamilton

MARION

2.5

Huntsville Airport

MADISON

2.5

New Market

MADISON

2.5

Hartselle

MORGAN

2.5

Ashland

CLAY

2.5

Fyffe

DEKALB

2.5

Beaverton

LAMAR

2.5

Walnut Grove

ETOWAH

2.5

Wilsonia

ETOWAH

2.5

Glencoe

ETOWAH

2.5

Chalafinee

CLEBURNE

2.5

Malone

RANDOLPH 

2.5

NWS Huntsville

Madison 

2.4

Priceville

MORGAN

2.3

Anderson COOP

LAUDERDALE

2.25

Byrd

MARION

2.25

Centre

CHEROKEE

2.25

Rogersville

LAUDERDALE

2.0

Holly Pond

CULLMAN

2.0

Addison

WINSTON

2.0

Steele

ST. CLAIR

2.0

Lincoln

TALLADEGA

2.0

Grant Tour

TALLADEGA

1.7

Vernon

LAMAR

1.5

Oneonta

BLOUNT

1.5

Hokes Bluff

ETOWAH

1.5

Oxford

CALHOUN

1.5

Fosters Crossroads

RANDOLPH

1.5

Highland Lakes

SHELBY

1.5

Remlap

BLOUNT

1.25

Millport

LAMAR

1.0

Bluff Park

JEFFERSON

1.0

Hueytown

JEFFERSON

1.0

Killen

LAUDERDALE

1.0

Sylvan Springs

JEFFERSON

1.0

Bessemer

JEFFERSON

1.0

Trussville

JEFFERSON

1.0

Moody

ST. CLAIR

1.0

Pell City

ST. CLAIR

1.0

Saks

CALHOUN

1.0

Ashland

CLAY

1.0

Wedowee

RANDOLPH 

1.0

Auburn University

LEE

1.0

Townley

WALKER

1.0

Springville

ST CLAIR

1.0

Palmerdale

JEFFERSON

0.75

Roanoke

RANDOLPH

0.50

Red Level

CHAMBERS 

0.50

Jasper

WALKER

0.50

Maylene

SHELBY

0.50

Berry

FAYETTE

0.50

Santuck

ELMORE

0.50

Seale

RUSSELL

0.30

Alexander City

TALLAPOOSA

0.25

Shelby Co. Airport

SHELBY

Trace

Birmingham Airport

JEFFERSON

Trace

Wetumpka

ELMORE

Trace

Montgomery

MONTGOMERY

Trace

Troy

PIKE

Trace

Tuscaloosa

TUSCALOOSA

Trace

Eutaw

GREENE

Trace

Boligee

GREENE

Trace

Greensboro

HALE

Trace

Chelsea

SHELBY

Trace

Meadowbrook

SHELBY

Trace

Abbeville

HENRY

Trace

Evergreen

CONECUH

Trace

Ozark

DALE

Trace

 

Temperatures remained at or below the freezing mark on Dec 26th across the northern half of the state, which lead to little or no snow melt. The snowpack was still visible from satellite on the morning of Dec 27th. The following is a MODIS satellite image from the NASA SPort Center in Huntsville, AL.

 


1km MODIS Natural Color Image (1633 UTC 12/27/10)


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