While you may have seen flurries at some point this fall, there have been no flurries or snow showers reported in Cincinnati (at the International Airport, where official records are kept) since summer ended. If you’re thinking it is unusual to make it to December 1st without any snow, you’re right.
In the last 100 years (since 1915), the first flakes of the season (whether the snow accumulates or doesn’t) were most commonly observed in the first 10 days of November, although it was not uncommon for the first flakes of the season to fall in mid to late November or late October:
There have only been 7 years since 1915 where the first snow flakes of the fall came after December 1st; the most recent year that this happened was in 1998 (which is also the record latest):
Before 1915, trace amount of snow were not included in official Cincinnati weather records. In other words, if snow fell before 1995 and the accumulation was under 0.1″, the daily snowfall amount was listed as “0.0” not “trace.”
Official snowfall records for Cincinnati date back to 1893, so we have the dates when the first accumulating snow of the fall or winter occurred for the last 119 years (this seasons’ first accumulating snow has not yet occurred).
Of these 119 years, the first accumulating snow (0.1″ or more) of the fall or winter in Cincinnati most commonly occurred between November 20th and 30th:
The first day of the season with accumulating snow has only come on or after December 1st 39 of the last 119 and after December 1st 38 of the last 119 years. The first day of the fall or winter with any snow (accumulating or not) is usually not the first day with accumulating snow; in the last 100 years, there were only 21 years in Cincinnati where the first day with any snow was also the first day with accumulating (0.1″ or more) snowfall. On average (1893 to 2014), 1.2″ of snowfall is recorded on the first day of the fall or winter with accumulating snowfall.
Using the mean and the median, the first flakes and first accumulating snow of the fall/winter season will come late this year (the dates have already passed).
Our only hope for seeing snowflakes in Cincinnati in the week ahead is Wednesday afternoon and evening. Long range forecast guidance suggests December will be warmer than average, so the likelihood for snow in the next 2-3 weeks is not high.