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We had a couple of rough spots this winter but when you look at the big picture, we came out of it pretty good. In fact, in some of my southern counties its been a yawner. The Accumulated Winter Season Severity Index (AWSSI), was developed to objectively quantify and describe the relative severity of the winter season. The key factors that determine the index are the intensity of cold weather, the amount of snow, and the amount and persistence of snow on the ground.

As you can see in the graphic, from southeast Iowa into the lower Great Lakes and Ohio Valley, the winter is classified as mild, the lowest level of discomfort on the AWSSI. That's not the case though to our northwest where conditions are rated extreme to severe.

For comparison sake, here's the AWSSI index for Moline. The 337 total is close to the all-time low, definitely earning yawner status.

Now here's the AWSSI for Minneapolis. It's a 1,000 points higher putting them in the severe category. Snow has been the big driver there. So far the NWS office has picked up 92.5 inches of snow. There's been an inch or more of snow on the ground for 109 consecutive days. That definitely get's you into the severe category.

As we all know, snow has not been all that plentiful here, especially in my southern counties. What has really made this winter tolerable are temperatures. Below you can see the number of days with highs below 32 degrees compared to normal in Cedar Rapids and the Quad Cities. Both cities are well below average and far from their all-time high number of days in the mid and upper 70s. Cedar Rapids is just 12 days higher than its all-time low.

Davenport is just 10 from its all-time low.

You can add another day of sub-freezing highs, (2 in Cedar Rapids as Friday did not reach the 32 degree threshold) and Saturday most definitely will not in either city with readings holding in the 20s.


After another quiet but chilly day Sunday, it appeared yesterday spring was going to make a valiant effort to show itself with the idea highs could reach 60 this coming Thursday. I admit I was liking the trend, especially with the EURO and GFS showing highs that looked like this. Good consistency right.



Friday models flipped and do not allow the warmth to penetrate beyond Missouri. Here's the latest highs projected by the two models. The EURO is 34 degrees colder in Dubuque at 37 instead of 71. The GFS is down 31 degrees from 68 to 37. Ouch....

The latest EURO