Snow Facts



  • They fall from clouds in cold weather when the air is too cold to melt ice into rain.
  • Outside the tropics most rain starts to fall as snow but melts on the way down.
  • The snow falls in the northern USA than falls at the North Pole because it is too cold to snow at the North Pole.
  • The heaviest snow falls when the air temperature is hovering around freezing.
  • Snow can be hard to forecast because a rise in temperature of just 1°C or so can turn snow into rain.
  • All snowflakes have six sides. They usually consist of crystals that are flat plates, but occasionally needles and columns are also found.
  • W. A. Bentley was an American farmer who photographed thousands of snowflakes through microscopes. He never found two identical flakes.
  • In February 1959 the Mt Shaska Ski Bowl in California had 4800 mm of snow in just six days.
  • In March 1911 Tamarac in California was buried in 11,460 mm of snow. The Antarctic is buried in over 4000 m of snow.
  • The snowline is the lowest level on a mountain where snow remains throughout the summer. It is 5000 m in the tropics, 2700 m in the Alps, 600 m in Greenland and at sea level at the Poles.