Scottish Weather Network Forum

General Information => General Discussion => Topic started by: Glen Derby on December 14, 2012, 12:28:51 PM

Title: What About Snow???
Post by: Glen Derby on December 14, 2012, 12:28:51 PM
My new weather station has now been up and running for nearly a month now, and the last 10 days have highlighted a question that I never got round to asking. 

What should I do about snow?  The accumulation of snow on top of the rain gauge must distort the recorded precipitation, with only a proportion of the snow eventually melting and being measured as rain. 

I think that it would be interesting to look back in future years at a record of snowfall, but is this a totally separate activity, ruler and spreadsheet, perhaps?

Any advice for the newest member from you old hands ??? 

Title: Re: What About Snow???
Post by: Budgie on December 14, 2012, 09:32:02 PM
The software I run for my own station is called Weather Display ( and this allows you to manually enter the measured snowfall, which is then kept is it's permanent records.
Another way is to make some sort of rain bucket heater that will melt the snow as it falls into the bucket and then take the measurements from that.

If you're looking for an automatic way to measure the snow then there are some on the Weather Watch Forum who are using a small sensor which bounces either sound waves or a laser off the ground and recording the distance.
When set up it's placed looking down at a fixed hard surface and the exact distance between the ground and sensor is recorded. When it snows, the distance between the ground and the sensor will reduce and this amount will be recorded as your snow depth.  ;)

Personally, I just manually input the snow depth as we don't get that much each year to worry about doing anything else.  ;D