Six CWG readers perfectly predicted D.C.'s winter snowfall

WEATHER NEWS: Six CWG readers perfectly predicted D.C.’s winter snowfall


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Washington received 13.2 inches of snow this past winter. Impressively, a half-dozen Capital Weather Gang readers called for exactly this much in our annual winter snowfall competition.

Congratulations go out to these winners:

  • Larry Burchett
  • Matt Clark
  • Davin E.
  • Michael Shreve
  • Alan Simpson
  • Ryan Walker

This elite group of prognosticators beat out about 900 other people who participated in our contest, and have richly earned bragging rights.

The 13.2 inches that fell at Reagan National Airport, the official observation site for the District, was just a half-inch shy of the most recent 30-year average (13.7 inches). It marked the fifth winter of the last six with lower-than-average snowfall.

Washington’s ‘normal’ snowfall has fallen

We should also make honorable mention to 19 other entrants who were within 0.1 inches of nailing the forecast:

  • Predicting 13.1 inches (0.1 inches too low): Guillermo Galdamez, Rachel Gordon, Justin Hudson, Robb Kookaby, Alexander Lange, Tabitha Lawler, Alex Lu, Rene Menjivar, Anthony Miller
  • Predicting 13.3 inches (0.1 inches too high): Monisha Das, Jadie Dawson, Carol Fyfe, Jessica Gray, Louis Gruber, Brian Kane, Irwin Reyes, Alexander Schlegel, Katy Tecson, Ryan Westrom

Overall, CWG readers did quite well in predicting how much snow would fall; the average forecast among the approximately 900 participants was 12.2 inches — just one inch off. About 100 participants were within an inch of hitting the target.

This was a rare year in which a lot of people found some success in predicting how much snow would fall.

As we noted Monday, CWG’s official winter outlook was in the ballpark with its snowfall projection, calling for 8 to 12 inches.

Our D.C. winter outlook was right on snow, flawed on temperatures

Among 24 CWG forecasters and writers who made snowfall estimates, Mike Branom — who interestingly is not a meteorologist and lives in Los Angeles — had the best forecast, accurately predicting 13.2 inches.

Before the winter, we also aggregated snowfall forecasts from TV weather teams and private-sector meteorologists, and the consensus was generally between about 6 and 12 inches — a little on the low side, but close.

This year was about as “average” for snowfall in the D.C. area as it gets. We generally got more snow than milder places to our south and less than the colder areas to the north. Our snowfall did manage to top Philadelphia, which is normally snowier, but we fell short of Salisbury, Md., and Wallops Island, Va., which typically see less.

Many cities in the East got pretty close to their average amounts, although several locations in the interior Northeast, such as Syracuse and Albany, N.Y., and Erie, Pa., saw much less than normal.

Below, find winners of past Capital Weather Gang snowfall forecast contests:

Capital Weather Gang snowfall forecast contest winners, 2020-2021

Capital Weather Gang snowfall forecast contest winners, 2019-2020

Capital Weather Gang snowfall forecast contest winners, 2018-2019

Capital Weather Gang snowfall forecast contest winners, 2017-2018

Capital Weather Gang snowfall forecast contest winners, 2016-2017

Capital Weather Gang snowfall forecast contest winners, 2015-2016

Capital Weather Gang snowfall forecast contest winners, 2014-2015

Capital Weather Gang snowfall forecast contest winners, 2013-2014

Capital Weather Gang snowfall forecast contest winners, 2012-2013



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