Thundersnow Video

This morning, you may have heard local meteorologists talk about thundersnow in Nashville.

A friend of the staff was filming her dogs playing in the snow when she got a first hand experience with this phenomenon. Watch & listen. Special thanks to Lori Leinard for sharing the video with us.

So, what is thundersnow?

The Weather Channel says:

Thundersnow is a snowstorm event in which thunder and lightning occur.

Thunderstorms accompanied by snow are usually of a different character than the “normal” thunderstorm. The latter are usually rather tall, narrow storms containing a rising updraft of warm, moist air that has risen in a layer from near the surface that may go upward to 40,000 feet or more. Temperatures at the surface are usually well above freezing.

Snowstorms, by contrast, are mostly associated with rather extensive layers of flat, relatively shallow cloud. Precipitation in the clouds is usually formed below 20,000 feet, as sketched in the first diagram on the right. Upward and downward motions in ordinary snowstorms are rather gentle. The exception is lake-effect snow, where the clouds are created by heating of air moving over relatively warm lakes. Lake-effect snowstorms have narrow clouds shaped more like ordinary thunderstorms, and actually sometimes develop thunder and lightning.

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