October is officially the start of the snow season, the first measured snow of the season occurred for the city of Indianapolis on this date 34 years ago
Do you remember the wild October snowstorm of 1989? It started on this date – October 18, the earliest date on record for measurable snow for the city. Officially .2″ fell by midnight, but we would go on to receive a total of 9.3″ of snow from the 18th to the 20th.
Trees and power lines toppled under the weight of the heavy/wet snow. Only 10 Octobers on record have produced a measurable snow – the last time in 2014 with .1″. Prior to 2014, 1993 had 2.4″.
Scanning weather records, October is the month that the first flakes fall. 42 Octobers on record have produced a trace or more of snow – that’s 30 percent. (Snowfall records date back 139 years.)
One year ago, the first trace of snow was recorded for the city of Indianapolis on the 17th, while portions of northern Indiana had one to four inches of wet, lake effect snowfall. The image below is from the NWS North Webster office out of Syracuse, Indiana October 17th, 2022.
This year, we have yet to have an official frost in Indianapolis, the coolest low was 38° on October 10th.
Autumn 2023 to-date is running 3° warmer than last year with 56% of the days averaging above normal.
Thank you to the Indianapolis Star for the snapshot of the newspaper dated Friday October 20, 1989. Note just days after the huge California earthquake that rocked the World Series that year.