Snow Cover Continues to Diminish

Over the past few days, a combination of sunshine and temperatures above freezing has allowed for a significant reduction in snow cover over southern Wisconsin.  True-color satellite imagery dramatically shows the areas where the ground has been cleared of snow.

Visible satellite image of Wisconsin showing snow cover on March 11.

We have annotated the images above to show the snow cover depths in different parts of southern Wisconsin.  The first image was taken on Friday, March 11, and the second on Monday, March 14.  Some localized areas within the marked regions may have depths outside these ranges.  The values shown in the images are representative of the majority of locations in each outlined region.  Some clouds are visible in both images, especially the one from Monday, where a thin layer of high clouds clutters the image over the far southern part of the state.  The brown bare ground can faintly be seen through these clouds.

With warm temperatures and partly to mostly cloudy skies forecast for most of the coming week, snow cover will continue to diminish significantly. Light rain is possible most areas late Wednesday night through Friday morning. Since temperatures will be well above freezing statewide, as rain falls on remaining snow, the melting process will be accelerated.

The National Operational Hydrologic Remote Sensing Center (NOHRSC), an agency of the National Weather Service, uses sophisticated technology to record the depth of snow cover across the U.S., as well as to predict how the snow cover will change with time.  The NOHRSC Interactive Snow Information page allows any user to interactively examine these observations and forecasts using an intuitive and powerful map interface.

Screenshot of NOHRSC Interactive Snow Information page.

To view a map of snow depth, find the drop-down box labeled "Select Physical Element" and select "Snow Depth" (under "Hourly Snow Analyses").  Then click "Redraw Map".  You can click and drag on the map image to zoom to a specific region. There are numerous options for different map layers, such as county boundaries and roadways.  Feel free to explore this tool, including the other meteorological elements, such as Snow Water Equivalent and 24-hour Snow Melt.


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