Anyone who has been out shoveling snow lately will not be surprised by official pronouncements that this season’s snow totals, even in April, are above average. But as you silently pray for spring to show up and stay, ponder this: It’s not really as bad as you think!
Areas closest to Newcastle that are included in the Black Hills Snow Course Reading completed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture show that the area is still above the 30-year average for snow totals and snow water equivalent.
Snow water equivalent, or SWE, is a common snowpack measurement for the amount of water contained in the snowpack. It can be thought of as the depth of water that would theoretically result if the snowpack were to melt instantaneously, according to Jason Nehl, a USDA resource specialist out of Sundance.