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Daryl Ritchison, WDAY, Published March 31 2012

Weather Talk: No weather event unusual in this part of the country

Although this year was definitely an exception with a record-breaking March, it is usually April that we can start thinking about spring weather.

Our thoughts may be on spring, but winter is always just a storm away this time of year. Strong temperature contrasts from Canada to the southern United States make storms this time of year common, and at our latitude, these storms are almost as likely to produce snow as they are rain.

Most of you are likely familiar with Laura Ingalls Wilder’s book “The Long Winter,” which describes the horrible winter of 1880-81 that her family lived through in De Smet, S.D. The following winter of 1881-82 is described in her next book, “Little Town on the Prairie” and was written as being generally pleasant with little snow. Yet, with spring in the air, a fierce blizzard struck that area in April. Pa Ingalls found it a bit odd that the only blizzard that winter came in April, yet I doubt he was too surprised, because in this climate, no seasoned resident finds any weather event unusual.


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