Maine Cooperative Snow Survey

This information is provided by a partnership with Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, Maine Geological Survey and the USGS New England Water Science Center, Maine Office.

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Survey Date Equivalent Water Content in Snowpack Change in Water Content from Preceding Survey Snowpack Depth Snowpack Density Water Content in Snowpack Compared to Historical Values Mean Water Content in a Drainage Basin ASCII Text File
April 30, 2014

Fifty-five sites across northern and western Maine reported this week, likely the last week of the 2014 Maine Cooperative Snow Survey. Snow depths went from a trace to 13.6 inches in Bald Mountain Township in northern Somerset County. Water equivalents went from zero to 4.4 inches, again at the Bald Mountain Township site. Whatever data comes in from now on will be added to the 2014 data files for future comparisons. Thanks to all the cooperators this season for their reports. We will see you in 2015!

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April 23, 2014

Snow (and flood threat) has mostly disappeared south of the Route 2 and Route 6 corridor. Western mountains, the Moosehead region, and a band in northern Maine still have upwards of two feet of snow on the ground. Warm daytime temperatures with cool nights have somewhat eased flooding danger, although northern Maine rivers are still a concern. About fifty sites were measured this week.

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April 16, 2014

The snowpack in southern and coastal Maine melted quickly this past week with the warm temperatures and rain. The northern portion of the state still has a lot of snow and ice that has yet to melt. Eighty-one sites were measured this week. Densities are increasing so it won't be long before warm temperatures cause the snow to melt. High values for the week were at the Kennebec Water Power site at Carrabassett (near Flagstaff Lake) with 33 inches of snow and 11.7 inches of water content in the snowpack.

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April 9, 2014

Eighty-five sites reported in this week. Snowpack density is increasing across the state as we move to more spring-like weather conditions. Twelve of the sites in Maine report over ten inches of equivalent water content and twenty-five of the sites still report a snowpack depth greater than thirty inches! The southern part of the state is losing some water content but western and northern Maine don't report much change.

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April 2, 2014

Maine's snowpack is holding on, exhibiting late winter-like conditions. In the northern two-thirds of the state densities are holding in the mid-twenty percent range. The majority of sites measured last week have at least 20 inches of snow and six inches of water content, with many readings well above that. High readings for the week were 45.2 inches of snow at the Bald Mountain Township site and twelve inches of water content at the Abbot site. Cooperators are encouraged to continue to collect accurate measurements and submit them by Wednesday morning for use in that week's maps. Four new sites were added this week; three in the Augusta area (Cobbossee Water District) and one in Bar Harbor (College of the Atlantic).

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March 26, 2014

Sixty-nine sites have reported today. Maps show another week of increased snow and higher water contents across much of the state. Deepest snowpack in the state is in Guerette with 48.6 inches of snow. Highest water content is found in Greenville/Greenville Junction with 11.6 inches of water. Maps will be revised as additional data comes in.

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March 19, 2014

Snow totals and water content increased across the state this past week as a large winter storm hit the state and temperatures remained cold. Readings from 134 sites in Maine, New Hampshire and New Brunswick were used to construct this week's maps. Highest values are found in the upper Androscoggin River valley, the Flagstaff and Moosehead Lake regions, and in far northern Maine. Seven sites in Maine have water content values greater than ten inches.

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March 12, 2014

Maps have been revised after removing some questionable density data. Sixty-seven sites were visited by observers this week. This week's snow, sleet and rain should make for some interesting readings next week! Stay tuned!

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March 6, 2014

Additional information came in from the upper Kennebec Valley so maps were revised. One hundred seventy eight measurements were used to construct this week's maps. Northwestern and northern Maine hold the most snow and have the highest water content. Densities have increased some in southern and coastal Maine since the February survey. Weekly surveys will now be done until the end of the snow season.

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February 5, 2014

One hundred and two sites were measured this week. Guerette, Winterville and Caribou came in with the highest snow and water content values. South Hope and Augusta came in on the low end of values. Additional sites from New Brunswick were added to the text file. Maps were not re-run.

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January 8, 2014

Sixty-nine sites were visited on the first snow survey of 2014. Snow depths varied from six to twenty inches across the state with water content varying from an inch and a half to almost five inches. Thick ice layers were reported at many sites. The next survey will be done the first week of February.

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Map and Data Type Descriptions
Equivalent water content in snowpack: Maps of equivalent water content in the snowpack in 1-inch increments based on measurements obtained from the sources listed above.
Change in water content from preceding survey: Maps of the change in equivalent water content in the snowpack from the preceding survey.  Only prepared while weekly surveys are being conducted.
Snowpack depth: Snowpack depth in 6-inch increments based on measurements obtained from the sources listed above.
Snowpack density: Snowpack density (water equivalent in inches divided by snowpack depth in inches) based on measurements obtained from the sources listed above. A snowpack with densities above 0.33 is considered "ripe". A ripe snowpack no longer has the ability to absorb rainfall and would tend to release water during a rain event.
Equivalent water content in snowpack compared to historical values: These maps (called quartile maps) show areas where measured values of water content are in the lowest 25-percent of measured values (significantly below normal values), the middle 50-percent of measured values (roughly normal for this time of year), or upper 25-percent of measured values (significantly above (normal).
Mean water content in a drainage basin: Mean water content in a drainage basin. It is calculated by finding the mean value of water content in a basin from the equivalent water content map above. This average water content in the basin is used in some National Weather Service river flow models.
ASCII text file of snowpack data: An ASCII text file of the data used in preparing the maps for the current survey.  Includes the site id, site name, site latitude and longitude (in decimal degrees), site elevation (feet above mean sea level), the survey date, and the depth, equivalent water content, and density of the snowpack.