The Erstwhile Marches of Snow-Gauge Clif

Here we are in the middle of this long, long month, when most Mainers are heartily sick of March marching on. We had a nasty little storm on Saturday that prevented us from visiting our daughter and son-in-law. A March gift.

But, if you look at it the right way, we are making some kind of progress.

To illustrate this, I must start with the backyard rather than the front. Last week there were 15 inches of snow. This week, 7 inches at its deepest with the snow gone from the edges of the yard.

Now to the front yard, which still has 15 inches of snow, same as last week.

Why the difference? The pictures provide the clue. They were taken within five minutes of each other, and the contrast between the two couldn’t be greater. The backyard actually gets some sun. Hence the melting snow. The front yard? Not so much, and in the spring, I swear our front yard is the last place on our road to have the snow completely melt.

The pictures below are from erstwhile Marches. I thought readers might enjoy seeing how much snow we had in mid-March for the past four years. The last picture, taken in 2018, reflects the usual amount of snow we once had in central Maine in mid-March.

As the pictures indicate, the trend has definitely been for less snow and earlier springs. And Snow-Gauge Clif, with his trusty red yard stick, will continue to measure the melting snow to see if the trend continues.

March 15, 2021

March 13, 2020

March 15, 2019

March 19, 2018

72 thoughts on “The Erstwhile Marches of Snow-Gauge Clif”

  1. We had rain where I live in NB, but a skiff of snow on Sunday overnight. it was very windy here in NB. Sunny cool light breeze my back yard is in the shadow and snow takes for ever to melt back there. a time or two I have gone out with a shovel and thrown the snow into the sun to get rid of it.

  2. Yes, definitely less snow these past few years. I remember winters when the snow was 3 feet deep in an average winter. It’s been at least a couple decades since that happened. We used to get storms off the Great Lakes, but now they come from further south. Changes in the jet stream, I guess.

  3. Although way too much for me, I admire the hearty Mainers! I recently returned to my northern home after two months of snowbirding … and snow fell a few days later. Yikes. Not a lot – but enough to create a bit of havoc. Then again, it’s March – the crazy month!

    1. Tee-hee! I was wondering why they weren’t in the same place. Have to watch out for those inanimate objects. Maybe they’re not as stationary as we might think. πŸ˜‰

  4. Hi Laurie… I have been travelling and have not been receiving email notification of the last couple of your blog posts …. (And others that I follow) .. I’ll have to check that when I get home… in the meanwhile I hope March starts to bring some good weather 😁

  5. Our yard is the same way. The front yard is the last place in the neighborhood to see snow. I always joke that one year I am going to have a snow-out contest just like the due with ice-out on the lake, have people case when the snow will be gone from our yard. The winner will get a taste of my husband’s homemade pizza. πŸ˜‚

  6. In 2020 Cliff was outside wearing just a sweater?? Wow, that must have been Spring-like! All our snow has finally melted, thank goodness. Of course, I remember getting an ice storm in Aprils past, so we can’t really assume Spring is right around the corner. Nevertheless, I can hope!

  7. I love the ongoing saga of Snow-Gauge Clif, with a look at March snow over the years. We had a nasty storm on Saturday too (sorry about your lost trip to see your daughter and son-in-law), but that inch of snow is all gone. You’ll get there soon!

  8. I hope you have a beautiful spring and no snow soon. If I lived there with all that snow I would have to move. πŸ™‚ We had a beautiful snow (rare for my area) last week. It was all gone in 2 days.

  9. So interesting to see the changes. Here it is the rain which is irritating – we have a few days of spring and then it’s back to cold and grey! But like you I see the changes over the years.

    1. Yes, too much rain can be irritating. Time was, we had this problem in June. I remember my father’s beans rotting and how he would have to replant them. However, nowadays, June tends to be dry. Changes!

  10. What a fun way to document the snow depth. Beyond the science of it all, it does give you something to do while you’re waiting for March to skedaddle. That sweater of Clif’s is especially nice!

  11. I love the photo series. Such a journalπŸ˜€ . Our garden is still having lots and lots of snow and the melting is quite slow due to low temperatures.

  12. Enjoyed seeing the yearly comparisons and have to admit that even though I complain about winter sometimes I miss the days when we received more snow throughout winter. Spring arrived early here and all the snow is gone and our road is finally not icy.πŸ™‚

    1. When you live in the north, you expect and certain kind of winter, and when that starts to change, it’s just plain weird. Especially when you are as old as I am.

  13. Sorry to hear that March isn’t a pleasant month for you, Laurie. Our snow here doesn’t stay put like yours, but usually melts within days. When I lived in another county in Colorado where the snow didn’t melt until May or June, I longed to live at a lower elevation with an earlier spring. I hope you will enjoy what signs of spring March will bring you.

  14. Oh no! your trip had to be postponed! (rescheduled, I hope)

    I enjoyed your post on so many levels:
    1) Had to reread the sections on Front – Back yard comparisons several times because I keep thinking I must have read wrongly. 8 inches difference between front & back yards is just amazing to me! What am i saying, the amount of snow is amazing enough to me!

    2) Snow Gauge Clif through the years – and the fashion changes really tickled me! Only the 2018 coat made any sense to me – the other 3 years he looks barely clothed for the weather (I know we’ve had this conversation before, but you know, Singaporean girl, clueless about cold, right?)

    1. I forgot to add:
      3) “erstwhile” – I am not ashamed to say I had to look this word up. It is so delicious sounding … such fun

  15. Very interesting to see the comparisons. You actually have two first-rate snow gauges – Clif and the lamp post. I’m sorry you had to reschedule your trip.

  16. We put our home in New England for sale in 2015 after having to get our roof shoveled twice. From what I see perhaps we should have waited as each year since there has been less and less snow. 😊 Kidding aside, getting less snow can be considered both good and bad. You need the moisture but you can get real tired of dealing with the snow and ice.

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