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View Full Version : Snowmelt. I was curious



David Tabor (sailordave)
02-12-2010, 01:27 PM
With all this white stuff sitting around I was curious. The storm in December was very light and fluffy, last weekend's storm a little heavier. Don't have a pic but a few days ago I cleaned off the top layer of snow, used my metal yardstick to mark off a 12" cube of snow and carefully scooped it out. Put it in a covered bucket to melt and then measured the water content. OBVIOUSLY it wasn't exactly 1728 in^3 but close enough for Guv'mint work!

Result was almost exactly 5 quarts of water. So assuming there were actually 30" of snow on my 3 acres (more or less) and not subtracting for the house/garage... there are over 413,000 gal. of water on my property!:eek: Which is over 55,000 Ft^3.

Damn, that's a lot of water. Sure hope it doesn't all melt at once.

StevenBauer
02-12-2010, 01:34 PM
And with the ground frozen it runs off instead of soaking in. We had some huge ice jams on the rivers here in the big thaw last month.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Smf8XUl7L44

These things take out bridges and flood towns.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=y-xkqgQaoOI

htom
02-12-2010, 03:35 PM
Thirty inches of snow could be from an inch of water to five inches of water. Ten to twelve inches of snow for an inch of water is "normal" freshly fallen snow.

seedtick
02-12-2010, 04:45 PM
1 cubic foot equals 7.48 gallons or 29.92 quarts

your almost 5 quarts weren't anywhere near close to equivalent water

John Smith
02-12-2010, 05:18 PM
With all this white stuff sitting around I was curious. The storm in December was very light and fluffy, last weekend's storm a little heavier. Don't have a pic but a few days ago I cleaned off the top layer of snow, used my metal yardstick to mark off a 12" cube of snow and carefully scooped it out. Put it in a covered bucket to melt and then measured the water content. OBVIOUSLY it wasn't exactly 1728 in^3 but close enough for Guv'mint work!

Result was almost exactly 5 quarts of water. So assuming there were actually 30" of snow on my 3 acres (more or less) and not subtracting for the house/garage... there are over 413,000 gal. of water on my property!:eek: Which is over 55,000 Ft^3.

Damn, that's a lot of water. Sure hope it doesn't all melt at once.
Some will melt quickly, but........I always point out large piles of snow in shopping centers to youngsters and ask how long it will take that snow to melt. Some of them really big plowed piles hang around a long time. They shrink, but slowly.

Michael D. Storey
02-12-2010, 05:19 PM
The insulating quality of snow will often keep the ground capable of absorbing a lot of the water. I grew up in NY and now live in MD, so I am not a tundra man. (F150) I mean, this absorb thing isnt too accurate with perma frost, but much of the West that relies on snow melt is relying on snow that melted, ran in, trickled down and came out somewhere else.

David Tabor (sailordave)
02-12-2010, 06:49 PM
1 cubic foot equals 7.48 gallons or 29.92 quarts

your almost 5 quarts weren't anywhere near close to equivalent water

Well duh, of course not. I was just curious how much water was in a foot of snow. These 5 quarts equal two inches of water.

seafox
02-12-2010, 06:57 PM
the standard I learned growing up was 9 inches of snow generally equells an inch of water. utah claims the greatest snow on earth ( which really ticks off colorado tourest and ski industries) because our powdery snow is so dry. what gets me is how just 30 miles makes such a great difference.

yesterday we got an unpredicted storm that resulded in " a lot of negitive e-mails to the weathermans computer" 30 miles north of the captial we recived a couple of inches that pretty much all melted in 3 hours and generally soaked in. a lot of who gets what is the lake effect so that the area down wind of the great salt lake might get a foot of snow while10 miles away hardly an inch