First Snowfall of the Year

First Snowfall of the Year

When Does It Start Snowing Near Me

Dale, the Power Equipment Expert
Power Equipment Expert

When will it start snowing? You've been checking the news daily and reading this year's farmers' almanac, but you're still not sure when to expect the first snowfall of the year. We love winter more than most, but we also know that no one wants to wake up one morning greeted by a foot of unexpected snow.

Even though snowfall in your area may be inevitable, preparing early ensures you won't be snowed in and unprepared when you least expect it. Just make sure you have a snowblower that fulfills the demands of your driveway.

To estimate the first snowfall in your area, check out the map below provided by the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).


First Expected Snow Map

Color Key Below*

First Snow Map Legend

When Does It Start Snowing Near Me?

Although the first snowfall varies across the USA every year, historically it will snow first at high-altitudes like the Rocky Mountains before Chicago and the Midwest.

Snowfall will eventually make its way south later in the year as the season moves into full swing. Use the map and key above to determine when you can generally expect the first snowfall near you.


How Much Snow Should I Expect?

We provide a forecast in our weather predictions article, but you can also check your farmer's almanac or local weather source. If you're especially curious and like using interactive maps, you can also explore the average snowfall per region, which the NOAA tracks using what they call the Regional Snow Index (RSI), which provides data on significant winter storms and their impacts around the country over the last 100 years. It uses a few useful indicators, including a similar scale as the one used for hurricanes. Below is an example region to illustrate how the tool works.

NOAA Region Snow Index Example Region
*Image Courtesy of the NOAA

How Do I Prepare for the Winter Season?

Nothing is worse than pulling out your snowblower for the first time during a blizzard just to find it won't start. If you're a planner, the first step is to make sure that you've completed proper pre-season maintenance on your snowblower.

Typical maintenance includes checking or replacing your spark plug and making sure you have the proper oil, gas, and a gas can to mix your fuel properly. Also, it helps to start your blower once before the snow season to detect any problems before you get buried in the garage. You've also got time to check your paddles, skid shoes, and scraper bar for any damage that might hinder performance.

Even if you don't have a snowblower, you can clear snow even faster by attaching a snowplow or blower directly to your tractor. Sometimes this alternative is better when garage space is limited or you enjoy the convenience of clearing snow while sitting down. If you use a tractor, you can even buy a snow cab attachment so you sit in a weather-protected bubble for comfort while clearing.

As much as we love the snow, we take safety and preparation seriously. Making sure your family, car, and house are all prepared for winter will keep everyone safe. There are plenty of checklists out there; just don't let winter catch you off-guard.

After all, you won't be clearing snow in a blizzard during a winter emergency.


What to Do When the Snow Hits

Even though you stored and maintained your snowblower properly at the end of last season, sometimes it may still be difficult to start after a while. We have some simple steps to make sure your snowblower will start the first time you pull it out of your garage. 

When it's finally time to clear the snow, we recommend wearing layers and proper winter gear to keep you warm, dry, and happy. 

Now that you've prepared for winter, there's nothing left but to go forth and conquer your driveway. Just be sure that you're using your snowblower safely, and you'll be happily clearing your driveway in minutes.


arrowHow to Pick the Perfect Snowblower

Dale, the Power Equipment Expert
Power Equipment Expert
Was this article helpful?