May is a month when we can usually put the snow shovels away for good and not have to pull them out. However, it seems like every 5 or 10 years a sneaky snow event shows up in Wisconsin. For example on May 7th, 2010 the north half of the TV-9 viewing area was dealing with 2 to 4″ of wet, heavy snow. It caused extensive damage to trees and especially the ginseng crop. Many of the shades over the top of the crop were ripped down by the heavy snow.
The heaviest May snowfall on record for Wausau proper is 5.5″ which fell on May 2nd, 1935. The latest data with at least 1″ snowfall for Wausau is May 12th. We have had trace snowfall amounts as late as May 30th. That occurred as recently as 1989.
The biggest May snowstorm of record for eastern Wisconsin occurred on May 10th, 1990. As much as 8″ coated areas just northwest of Milwaukee with up to 6″ up to Green Bay and even Oconto Counties. Many thousands lost power as the wet snow clung to trees that already had leafed out. In fact in the city of Waukesha, about 80% of it’s 30,000 trees were damaged or destroyed. Around 4 million dollars worth of damage occurred throughout the state. Schools were closed and road plows were busy. You can read more about this storm from the following link. http://www.crh.noaa.gov/news/display_cmsstory.php?wfo=grb&storyid=82851&source=0
This post was written by Tony Schumacher on May 9, 2012