MIDDLEBURY - The popular television sitcom claims, "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia", but when it comes to the Lake Champlain basin region, it's always wetter-and cloudier.
Following the wettest winter on record, the spring of 2011 in Vermont has already surpassed the record, according to the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration or NOAA and other sources.
Regarding spring, it should be noted that most weather professionals define spring as "meteorological spring" (March 1-May 31) as opposed to common spring or "calendar spring" which starts with the spring equinox and ends with the summer solstice. This year, calendar spring officially ends 7:08:59 p.m. on June 21.
According to various data sources, Vermont may have the dubious honor of clinching the title of "A Winter and Spring for the Record Books".
Below are the top-10, record breaking weather-related occurrences for winter and spring 2010-11.
Top-10 sources include NOAA, the U.S. Department of Energy, the State of Vermont, EJS Weather Inc., and insurance industry data:
1. The third-largest single spring snowfall on record.
2. The snowiest February on record.
3. The second-snowiest "meteorological winter" (Dec. 1-end of February).
4. The third-biggest annual snowfall (projected, July 1, 2010-June 30, 2011).
5. The wettest April on record.
6. The highest Lake Champlain level of flooding (103.2 feet above sea level set May 6). Recent rains may return the lake level to near or above the May 6 record before Memorial Day.
7. The wettest meteorological spring.
8. The cloudiest winter and spring which already beats the Pacific Northwest's winter-spring 2010-11 cloud-cover record.
9. The longest winter-spring heating degree days cycle. Heating-degree days reflect the demand for heating energy.
10. The highest number of flooded roads and homes and camps, by a single weather-related event, on record.