Quandary: A look at Summit’s record snowfalls | SummitDaily.com

Quandary: A look at Summit’s record snowfalls


Quandary, the old and wise mountain goat, has been around Summit County for ages, and has the answers to all questions about life, love and laws in the High Country. Have a question for Quandary? Email your queries about Summit and the High Country to Quandary@summitdaily.com.

Dear Quandary,

What’s the record for the largest snowfall in one day in Summit County?

Was last month’s nonstop storm not enough? This old goat can certainly appreciate the need for snow, but some of these records might stretch beyond the desirable.

According to the National Weather Service, the largest snowfall on record in Summit County is brought to us by the Green Mountain Dam weather station, and totaled 30.5 inches in one day. This massive total fell on April 4, 1947. Some might be surprised that this large amount came so late in the season, but in fact, January, February and March are the snowiest months in Summit, so 30 inches in April isn’t really a stretch.

If you prefer your records a little closer to home, the Breckenridge weather station recorded its largest snowfall on Oct. 10, 2005, totaling 24.1 inches; this beat out the record of 24 inches set on Dec. 7, 1943, and matched the amount that fell on April 24, 2003. Kudos to all you locals who dug out of those messes, and to all the people who in 20 years will be telling their kids about having to walk to school, uphill in both directions, under 2 feet of snow (whether it happened or not).

Dillon’s largest snowfall on record also matched 24 inches and fell on April 9, 1944.

Now for all the Frisco residents hoping to hear tales of people in the 1800s digging themselves out with nothing but a gold pan and a stick of dynamite, I’m sorry to say you are sadly mistaken. Most of us actually saw the record high for Frisco — 19 inches, which fell on Jan. 31, 2014.

Previously, Frisco’s record was 8 inches in one day, which fell on Sept. 22, 2006; not really much to brag about when you’re talking to the Front Rangers.

Silverthorne’s record total is also 19 inches, which fell on March 3, 2008. Rounding out the county, Keystone has the lowest record total, with 18 inches falling on Jan. 31, 1996.

How all of these different towns have such wildly different records is a bit of a mystery for this old goat, but if you’ve ever ventured throughout the county on a snowy day, it’s easy to see that each area really does have its own climate. On any given day it’s very possible that snow will fall all day in Frisco, and Dillon never sees a flake, or vice versa.

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