There's been much debate as to what year has had the most snowfall in the history of West Michigan. Lots of people keep brining up the winter of 78/79. Or that this year is the worst ever.
I did some research on the National Weather Service website and this is what I came up with.
The Records Go From 1892 To 2013
Rank | Winter | Inches Of Snow
Total Snowfall (inches) Per Winter
Total Snowfall (inches) Per Month
Total Snowfall (inches) In 1 Day
13/14 Current Snowfall (inches) Totals
Nov: 2.2 Dec: 34.7 Jan: 41.9 Feb: 8.4
Here's a quick snapshot of the lowest temps.
Lowest Daily Minimum Temperature (degrees F)
Rank Temp Ending Date
1 -24 2/14/1899, 2/13/1899
3 -23 2/12/1899
4 -22 1/19/1994, 1/30/1951
6 -21 1/11/1979, 2/11/1899, 2/10/1899
9 -20 1/4/1981, 2/1/1899
My theory as to why this winter seems so horrible has less to do with how much snow that's fallen but how windy January was. West Michigans average winter wind speed is approx 17mph. This last January we had 17 days with wind gusts of 30 mph or more. The wind caused a lot of drifting, giving the impression that is was all fresh snow.