Spring Snow: How Rare is it?

We have entered the second half of April and while many are thinking spring, Mother Nature has other plans for the Miami Valley.

The Storm Center 7 team is calling for snow this week, and that might have you wondering how common it is for snow to fall this time of year. Well, the answer might surprise you.

The weather is going to feel and look more like winter Tuesday night - Wednesday morning. Are you ready? whio.com/weather

Posted by Chief Meteorologist McCall Vrydaghs on Monday, April 19, 2021

Statistically, snow in spring is less likely than during the winter months, but is still possible. According to the National Weather Service in Wilmington, Ohio, the average latest date of measurable snowfall for Dayton, Ohio is typically around March 29th, but historically we’ve seen snow later than that.


Dayton History (National Weather Service data back to 1894)

  • Latest 1″+ snowfall for Dayton: 3.5″ (April 21, 1901)
  • Latest measurable snowfall for Dayton: 0.5″ (May 9, 1923)
  • Most snowfall on any day in May: 0.5″ (May 9, 1923)

While snow and ice are possible in April and May, forecasting can be difficult. It’s not just the atmospheric conditions that needs to be considered, but also how warm the ground is when wintry weather strikes.

Since the first day of Spring, March 20, 2021, until now, the earth’s surface has been absorbing solar radiation. The sun’s rays are getting stronger and the angle of the sun is getting higher in the sky each day. This helps to warm the ground temperature, and will significantly diminish how much snow can accumulate on the ground this time of year. That being said, snow or ice can accumulate much quicker on higher elevated surfaces such as on top of cars or grassy surfaces, bridges, and overpasses.

To stay updated on when winter or severe weather is expected in your neighborhood, visit the Storm Center 7 weather page.