COEUR d’ALENE — Climatologist Cliff Harris could hardly wait for the record to fall, but wait he did.
His patience paid off.
“I delayed it by an hour because we were so close,” he said of his routine weather station check every four hours every single day.
So rather than check his weather station near the Coeur d’Alene public golf course at noon, which is his habit, Harris measured at 1 p.m. Friday. Here’s what he documented: 39.7 inches of snow had fallen since the first of February. That beat the all-time February snowfall record of 39.5 inches, set in 1955. Harris’s data dates back to 1895.
“It’s still snowing really heavily, so we’ll go over 40 today,” he almost gloated at 1:15 p.m.
As of early Friday afternoon, Coeur d’Alene had received 70.9 inches of snowfall for the season, eclipsing the entire winter average of 69.8 inches, Harris said.
“And to think we had 31.6 total for all of October, November, December and January,” Harris noted. “All this snow in just 12 days is more than we’ve had the rest of the entire winter.”
The record’s also likely to grow. Harris said a big storm with lots of moisture over the Sea of Japan is headed for the Gulf of Alaska and, perhaps by late next week, your backyard. That storm could pack a punch of 7 to a dozen inches, Harris said, and there could be more small storms before that one arrives.
“This will be a February like no other February,” he said.
As the record book attests, it already is.