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Three unusually early snows make KC weather history, and maybe predict rest of winter

Early season snowfall in Kansas City may indicate snowy winter ahead

Kansas City saw it's earliest measurable snowfall this winter season when snow fell on Oct. 14. There have only been two other years in history when measurable snow fell this early in the season, and those winters each ended with over 30" total.
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Kansas City saw it's earliest measurable snowfall this winter season when snow fell on Oct. 14. There have only been two other years in history when measurable snow fell this early in the season, and those winters each ended with over 30" total.

If you think winter weather has come early to the Kansas City area this year, you’re not wrong.

The first snow came on Oct. 14, when Kansas City had its earliest measurable snowfall in more than a century — .2 of an inch at Kansas City International Airport.

That broke a 120-year-old record. The last time it snowed this early in Kansas City was on Oct. 17, 1898, when 3.3 inches of snow fell, according to the National Weather Service in Pleasant Hill.

The average first measurable snowfall date for Kansas City is Nov. 28.

The metro’s second snow, 1.3 inches at KCI, came on Thursday.

And on Monday, Kansas City had its third winter storm, which dropped 1 to 3 inches of snow across much of the metropolitan area. KCI reported .5 of an inch of snow.

This is only the third year in the city’s 131 years of recorded weather history where it has seen three measurable snow events by Nov. 12. The other two years were in 1898 and 1992, according to the Weather Service.

That had the National Weather Service asking on Facebook: “How much snow did those years bring?”

The answer: in 1898-99 the winter season had 38.6 inches of snow, the 6th snowiest on record. And the 1992-93 winter season had 34.3 inches of snow, the 11th snowiest on record.

A normal snowfall for the season is 18.8 inches. So far, 2 inches of snow have fallen at Kansas City International Airport.

If history repeats itself, this could be a long winter, with more snow than usual.

The average last snowfall date in Kansas City is March 23.

Robert A. Cronkleton: 816-234-4261, @cronkb
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