Moscow – Strongest snowstorm in 140 years

13 Feb, 2019 – Historic blizzard brings white winter back to the Russian capital.

“Moscow’s strongest snowstorm in 140 years delights locals,” shouts the headline.

“A heavy storm hit Moscow last night, covering the city’s streets with an impressive 11mm (0.43 inches) of snow, becoming the strongest in 140 years, a leading meteorologist told local media.”

Less than half an inch of snow? The photos show a lot more than that. Besides, I find it hard to believe that Muscovites would be excited by such a tiny amount of snow. I also don’t understand how such a minuscule amount of snow could create the ‘strongest snowstorm in 140 years.” I must really be missing something in the translation.

“Knee-tall snow banks are typical for the Russian capital in February but the latest storm really caught the imagination of locals for its speed and intensity. After a string of warm days the Muscovites were brought back to the Ice Age as piles of snow emerged literally overnight.

“Somewhat predictably the snowstorm caused traffic jams and flight delays.

“People were posting idyllic images of snow covered trees and snow banks. “It is wonderful to observe that from the inside,” one user wrote on Instagram adding that driving a car would be “scary.”

Thanks to Argiris Diamantis and Philip Salmon for this link

“This is Russia Today speaking,” says Argiris. “The part of the strongest snowstorm, that I believe to be true. The part of delighted people, celebrating the return of winter, that I don’t believe. Snowstorms seldom make people very happy.”

Ahhhhh, but here’s another link. This one reports that “a record snowfall blanketed Moscow with nearly one-fourth of the monthly norm on February 13.” Trouble is, it doesn’t say how much snow that actually was.

See great photos. One of them shows a front-end loader removing the snow.:
Thanks to Clay Olson for this link

13 thoughts on “Moscow – Strongest snowstorm in 140 years”

  1. If they used milimeters they probably informed about total precipitation, and 11mm of water can mean something like 10-20 cm of snow.

    And about the delight, I am also one of those who welcomes these events so I really don’t find it hard to believe. Everything becomes beautiful and fun when there is enough snow! Just look at children.

  2. despite all that, the weather is relative warm in west-central EU. So, if there is a climate change, whatever that will be, the outcome of models seems to be unpredictable. There are variations in weather patterns but that is normal, swinging from up to down and vice versa. I point to for a description of Al Gore’s phantasies which has indoctrinated a whole generation who is now protesting against climate. What is told in school, high or not, isn’t known to me but teachers has to be a priest of Al Gore’s believe.

  3. I looked at the pictures and this was nothing more than heavy flurries. Just click bate I suppose. What is interesting to note is the fact that it appears that the lack of journalistic ethics is not limited to just the US.

  4. I want to explain as an insider: the deep rooted notion of us – the Russians – is that the three months (from Deceber to February) should be the REAL winter with constant accumulation of snow and with frosts. So, when we have a prolonged thaw, many people here are depressed saying that the things should not be like that. The snowfall of the night 12th/13th February this year was not a storm but it added about three inches of fresh snow in several hours, and that might be a record for this particular day of the calendar. Thus a thaw was finished and everything looked very nice, really winter-like.

  5. This 140-year storm, the greatest since 1879, buried Moscow under .43 inch of towering Siberian drifts?

    Alas for Russia’s strapping stalwarts of yore! Considerably further south than Muscovy, Buffalo, New York, sees more than that in the first week of December.

  6. A Yahoo article about the same story allowed comments below. A local commented that they got 28 inches of snow since Sunday. Topped off with this little dusting made it record breaking apparently.

  7. Rutgers Snow Lab

    Yesterday’s snow cover extent across Northern Hemisphere lands. For more daily charts, including the departure from satellite-era normal, click the map.

    Anomalies of monthly snow extent

    Note: 12-month running anomalies of monthly snow extent are plotted on the 7th month using values from November 1966 to December 2018.

  8. If they think its bad to day they have a least two major arctic winter depressions tracking over Northern Scandinavia into Russia during Friday into Monday moving around the very large Blocking High parked over the EU and centerd on Southern Germany.
    More evidence that low levels of UV push very wet and windy weather far more Northwards during the 6 year solar minimum period than during the high UV solar max period, cooling further Central Europe in time for the late March Beast from the East.

  9. Average February precipitation in Moskow is 36mm. It is possible that 100 mm of low density snow fell making 1/4 of the average precipitation. Another data point is that 15 days of February are rainy days for Moskow. That may mean that only ~50 mm of snow fell in the storm. Higher density snow would result in lower measured depths.

  10. I’m gonna wanna say Russia isn’t known for wimpy winters either, even now, so that’s really saying something.

  11. I don’t understand this. Russian winters are treated with FEAR in western Europe. It was a SEVERE Russian winter that defeated Hitler…….and Napoleon before him !!
    Severe LOW temperatures of around minus 20 Celsius is what we imagine a Russian winter to be ! This TINY amount of snow is NOTHING !

    We live in mild West Wales and don’t see snow on many winters. They do in the Welsh hills and mountains inland. In 1982, we had 14 FEET DRIFTS of snow that buried many of our sheep, and suffocated some of them. That was a once in 20 or 30 year event here. I thought that Russia, with its continental climate…….like America’s Mid West…….had much more snow and cold temps.
    Much of central Europe, around Austria and Switzerland, has had huge snowfalls in January/Feb.
    What ON EARTH is this Russian report ?

  12. 11 mm of snow is in water equivalent which is about 10 cm of snow if we measure the depth with a ruler. It was record snowfall just for that day, not for the whole winter.

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