Storm makes this among snowiest Novembers, leads to rare early snow day
Monday's blizzard, which dumped 3 to 10 inches of snow on Chicago and the suburbs, has contributed to one of the snowiest Novembers on record, according to ABC 7 meteorologist Phil Schwarz.
The official 8.4 inches of snow pushed the month's total accumulation to 11.9 inches, making this the fourth-snowiest November, Schwarz said.
On average, November snowfall totals about 1.2 inches, said Amy Seeley, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Romeoville.
Schwarz cautions against reading too much into this early season storm as an indicator of the winter to come.
As an example, he cites the "easy winter" that followed November 2015, which was the fifth-snowiest November on record with 11.2 inches of snow.
Some reference El Nino as a predictor of milder weather to come, Schwarz said.
"The problem is it's a relatively weak El Nino and some of our worst winters (have accompanied) a weak El Nino," he said.
El Nino is a complex weather pattern that can result in warmer and slightly drier winters, according to the Midwest Regional Climate Center in Champaign.
The storm meant a rare November snow day for schools across the suburbs.
Northwest Suburban High School District 214 hadn't had a snow day in November or December since at least the 2010-11 school year, spokeswoman Jennifer Delgado said.
"Some years we have had no snow days and in other years we have had a few, but those occurred in January, February or March," she said. The school district builds three snow days, officially called emergency closing days, into its calendar.
"If we take more than three, then we would have to add on extra days to our school calendar," she said.