The calendar flips March and 2019 has supplied scarcity for New Jersey snow lovers. Several nickel and dime events, sure, but not the mother lode that leaves us ditching rulers for yardsticks. Jim Cantore has monster measurements to make out west this year. This is the ebb and flow nature of winter in the Mid-Atlantic. Boom seasons sprinkled in typical years of bust.
Yet recency bias dominates the narrative. Social media is rife with it doesn’t snow like it used to claims, and while I share the frustration it is not true. Consistent, big snow is not the norm. Take the dry years that carried us from the 80s through the early 2000s where the foot plus storms could not add up enough fingers to make a full hand. You had 1993, 1996, and 2003. I remember a big event in 1987 or 88—the first primetime snow storm I remember—when I was a kid in East Brunswick, but I am not sure that cracked a foot. After that, however, the boom time set in. Dispersed between down years (not unlike this one) you had 2007, multiple foot plus events in winter 2009-2010 and 2010-2011. 2012 and 2013 were a total roast fest but then more big time action came in 2014, 2015, 2017, and 2018; much of which documented by this photographer. New Jersey snow lovers have had it made. A regression to the mean is probable.
None of this is to say I am not bummed. I love snow; it can never snow enough. But considering our low latitude—the 40th parallel—that has us due west of Portugal, mind you, many variables must come together to produce big snow. This casual rant is a simple reminder to fellow NJ snow lovers to appreciate our big storms since we never know when we will bust out the yardsticks next.
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