2008-2009 Winter Season Snowfall

 The winter of 2008-2009 resulted in another snowy season with most locations in south-central and southeast Wisconsin exceeding their normal snowfall for an entire winter season.  On average, eastern Wisconsin received the most snowfall with most locations receiving over 60 inches.  Some locations near the Wisconsin-Michigan border received over 100 inches of snow between October 2008 and May 2009.  The highest seasonal snowfall total of 153.0 inches was found at Hurley, WI in Iron County.  The lowest snowfall total of 33.0 inches was found at Chippewa Falls, WI in Chippewa County. 

December proved to be the snowiest month. Many locations in the NWS Milwaukee/Sullivan county warning area measured anywhere from 35 to 50 inches of snow in the month of December 2008.  These snowfall totals are close to what southern Wisconsin averages for an entire winter.  During December, Dane County Regional Airport received 40.4 inches.  This is an all time record for the snowiest December which was previously set back in February of 1994.  General Mitchell International Airport in Milwaukee received 35.3 inches.   

Below is a graphic showing the 2008-09 winter snowfall through the end of May 2009.  Some smoothing and estimation was used.  The graphic includes over 260 snowfall totals from the various co-op observers that exist in Wisconsin.  



Between October 2008 and May 2009, 72.0 inches of snowfall were recorded at Dane County Regional Airport.  This amount has made the 2008 - 09 winter season the 6th snowiest on record in Madison.

Below is a list of the top 10 winter season snowfall amounts for Madison...


1           101.4            2007-08
2             76.1            1978-79
3             75.9            1885-86
4             73.7            1993-94
5             72.4            1985-86
6             72.0            2008-09
7             71.2            1992-93
8             70.9            1909-10
9             70.7            1897-98
10          67.4             1970-71



Between October 2008 and May 2009, 76.0 inches of snowfall were recorded at General Mitchell International Airport in Milwaukee.  This did not rank in the top 10 winter season snowfall amounts for Milwaukee. 

Below is a list of the top 10 winter season snowfall amounts for Milwaukee...


1            109.8         1885-86
2              99.1         2007-08
3              94.2         1897-98
4              93.3         1959-60
5              83.2         1973-74
6              82.9         1978-79
7              82.6         1903-04
8              81.9         1993-94
9              80.8         1922-23
10            80.7         1977-78


Below, for comparison, is a graphic showing snowfall totals from the winter 2007-2008 season.  During the winter of 2007-08, south-central and southeastern Wisconsin received the most snowfall.  Madison had the snowiest winter on record with 101.4 inches and Milwaukee had the second snowiest winter on record with 99.1 inches.  Overall, the winter of 2008-09 was quieter than the previous winter and no seasonal snowfall records were set.


The winter season in this product is defined from July 1st through June 30th of the following year.  This takes into account the entire cold season. This differs from meteorological winter...which is defined as December...and January and February of the following year.


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