LYNCHBURG, Va. – While Lynchburg residents may have been singing ‘Let It Snow’ this past holiday season, Mother Nature did not listen to their calls as areas to the west enjoyed a White Christmas. In fact, the Hill City is in the midst of an incredibly long snowless streak: 669 days as of Wednesday.
The last time Lynchburg got measurable snow? March 8, 2019, when 1.4 inches of the white stuff was recorded at the official climate site at Lynchburg Regional Airport.
Depending on who you talk to, the nearly two-year drought is either the longest or second-longest on record. I discussed the discrepancies in the data with the National Weather Service in Blacksburg on Twitter Tuesday.
Here is what our data set shows for Lynchburg: pic.twitter.com/gF1fvAKjzJ— NWS Blacksburg (@NWSBlacksburg) January 6, 2021
You see the record streak from 2000-2003 of 1389 days. The culprit there may be missing data, as opposed to no snow, as a local weather enthusiast pointed out memories of snow on a number of occasions.
After further investigation, we unfortunately found that the snow data for Lynchburg (LYH Airport) on that date and pretty much that entire month was missing. We discovered Big Island nearby had 5 inches on that date, as did other nearby sites. The data is missing not zero!— NWS Blacksburg (@NWSBlacksburg) January 6, 2021
While we can’t say for sure if it’s the longest or second-longest streak, it’s certainly historic! It may come to an end later this week as we expect wintry weather in the Lynchburg area.
Our forecast (as of noon on Wednesday) calls for a coating to 2″ of snow in the Hill City, which would be enough to snap the snow drought. The snow could cause slick roads and work and school schedule changes Friday. It’s expected to begin between 5 and 11 a.m.
You can get more details on how this system will affect other parts of Southwest and Central Virginia here. Stay tuned for updates as there could be subtle changes to the forecast.