What we’ve seen so far in the 2020-2021 winter season

Weather Blog

Peoria, Ill. (WMBD) – We are more than halfway through the meteorological winter season and so far it hasn’t been much of a winter. As of January 20th Peoria has only recieved 6.2 inches of snow this winter season, 6.5 inches below average.

In fact much of the state has seen below average snowfall, above average temperatures and below average precipitation since December 1st. The only parts of the state with near to above average snowfall is across far NW Illinois where we’ve had more frequent snows and near Decatur which saw locallized snow accumulations of 6-10 inches between January 2nd and 3rd.

According to the Accumulated Winter Storm Severity Index (AWSSI) this winter has been “Mild”. The AWSSI measures how severe a winter season is based on the intensity and persistence of cold temperatures and the amount and persistence of snow on the ground. Given that our heaviest snow so far this season was a whopping 2.2 inches on New Years Day and our temperatures have been generally above average, it’s no surprise that this is the mildest winter to date in the last 5 winter seasons.

The mild weather we’ve seen this winter is much in line with the projections I gave back in November, at least at a local level, when I called for above average temperatures and below average snowfall this winter. The one aspect of my Bold winter Prediction that has not panned out thus far is the call for above average precipitation. There’s still a lot of winter ahead of us and plenty of time for this forecast to bust. On average, Peoria receives 6.2 inches of snow in February, 2.7 inches in March and 0.6 inches in April. While the bulk of our seasonal snowfall typically comes in December and January, we still have a chance to make up some ground over the next month and a half.

Any storms ahead?

Central Illinois will see an arctic front drop into the region Thursday night. This front is expected to come through dry but it will leave high temperatures in the 20s on Friday and Saturday with low temperatures in the teens and single digits. Behind this cool down, a complex storm system will begin to move into Central Illinois Saturday night and will bring periods of rain, ice and snow to Central Illinois through Monday night. Models disagree on the track, strength and timing of the storm but the storm could bring more accumulating ice and snow to Central Illinois. It’s not clear how much ice or snow we’ll see at this point, but those planning on traveling Sunday night and Monday night will want to continue to monitor the latest forecast.

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