Chicago Ties Record With 9 Days of Consecutive Snow

Jonathan Erdman
Published: February 13, 2018

Chicago tied its streak of consecutive days with measurable snow Sunday, and several other Great Lakes cities either broke or approached record snow streaks as well. 

(MORE: Winter Storm Central)

Sunday marked the ninth and final day in a row with at least 0.1 inch of snowfall at O'Hare International Airport, tying a record-long stretch in Chicago from Jan. 6-14, 2009 and Jan. 29 - Feb. 6, 1902, according to the National Weather Service.

Only one of the days had heavy snowfall – 6.2 inches on Feb. 9 during Winter Storm Mateo – but this nine-day stretch produced more snowfall (18.3 inches) than had fallen in the entire season through Groundhog Day (10 inches). 

It also left Chicago's O'Hare International Airport with its greatest snow depth in three years, since Winter Storm Linus dumped over 19 inches of snow just before Groundhog Day 2015.

The latest snow streaks triggered thousands of flight cancellations, including more than 200 of them Sunday. 

Understandably, snow fatigue had filtered into the airport's official Twitter account by Sunday morning.

Just one year ago, Chicago couldn't keep as much as an inch of snow on the ground in January or February for the first time on record.

Other Streaks

Rockford, Illinois, also picked up measurable snow over the same nine-day stretch as Chicago, topping the previous record streak of seven straight days from Jan. 1-7, 1994 and Jan. 24-30, 1994. 

Des Moines, Iowa's eight-day snow streak tied for its second longest in records dating to 1884, topped only by a nine-day streak in March 1965.

If it wasn't for a mere trace of snow Feb. 6, Milwaukee would have broken its record-long streak of eight straight days set in February and March 2007. 

A pair of long measurable snow streaks came to an end in the eastern Great Lakes on Sunday, including in Buffalo (9 straight days) and Syracuse (13).

These latest streaks were nowhere near the records of 28 straight days in Buffalo – ending Jan. 22, 1977 – and 18 straight days in Syracuse, ending Jan. 15, 1999.

Jonathan Erdman is a senior meteorologist at and has been an incurable weather geek since a tornado narrowly missed his childhood home in Wisconsin at age 7. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

The Weather Company’s primary journalistic mission is to report on breaking weather news, the environment and the importance of science to our lives. This story does not necessarily represent the position of our parent company, IBM.

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