This week we had our first measurable snow in Raleigh, NC in almost two years. It made for a memorable ending to the week and brought back memories of the few snow events we’ve experienced over our past six years here in North Carolina.
I’ll never forget our first snow event here in Raleigh, NC in January 2014. We had moved to the Triangle the week before Christmas in 2013 from the snow belt of Northeast Ohio, where snow is measured in feet, not inches. We had heard from native North Carolinians how bad it gets when it snows here in the South, but had no idea how treacherous the roads can be after it snows. From what I remember, that snow of January 2014 was upwards of 4-6″, which shut down the city for days. Although 4-6″ of snow is a regular occurrence in the Midwest, they just don’t have the resources to handle that much snow here in North Carolina.
The problem with that particular snow event was how quickly it came in. People did not get out of work early enough to beat the snow, which caused a gridlock on all the Interstates and roads around the Triangle. It was so slick that vehicles could not make it up Glenwood Avenue in North Raleigh, which is when a photo from a local woman went viral. A vehicle engine caught fire after it overheated when it struggled to climb up Glenwood Avenue. My commute to the suburbs, which normally takes 45 minutes, took me 2.5 hours to get home, but I made it home safe and sound!
Since that first snow experience six years ago, I can count on one hand the number of snow events we’ve had. But every time since then we have been extremely cautious, with just the threat of snow causing schools to be cancelled. Everyone learned their lesson from that “Snowmageddon” event of January 2014.
There are a few guarantees when snow is in the forecast and when we do receive measurable snow here in Raleigh, North Carolina.
- For whatever reason, bread, eggs, and milk are cleared off of the shelves at grocery stores in advance of the snow storm. Why the ingredients for French Toast are the first things to go is a mystery, but it is humorous for everyone who lives here.
- All the kids across the Triangle get dressed up in their snowsuits, hats, and gloves and enjoy the snow for hours, sledding, building snowmen, and making snow angels.
- Any snow becomes a 24/7 news event, where you see around the clock coverage of the conditions, roads, and weather. There is something special about watching local news coverage of a winter wonderland!
For me, I take full advantage of any measurable snow cover on the roads, breaking out my cross country skis and skiing around our neighborhood. That first major snow event I skied around our neighborhood and remember when some neighbors stopped their Jeep, rolled down their window, and asked me what I was doing. I told them I was “enjoying the snow!” I don’t think they had ever seen someone on skis before…