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Warm February at Grandfather

Article Published: Mar. 15, 2012 | Modified: Mar. 15, 2012

The automatic weather station at the top of Grandfather Mountain recorded seasonably warm temperatures and dry weather during the month of February.

The average high temperature for February was 40.9 degrees and the average low temperature was 24.9 degrees.

The average high temperature at Mt. Mitchell was 44.4 degrees and the average low temperature was 28.1 degrees. The lowest temperature recorded at Grandfather during the month was minus 1.5 degrees on Feb. 13.

The rainfall total of 2.10 inches for the past month was 2.56 inches, or 55 percent, below the 56-year average rainfall total for February of 4.66 inches. Rain for the year-to-date totals 7.94 inches, which is 1.32 inches (or 14 percent) below the norm for this time of year. Rain fell 10 days during the month.

The snowfall total for February measured at Grandfather Mountain’s Top Shop was 2 inches, falling 11.45 inches or 85 percent, short of the 56-year average snowfall total for the month of 13.45 inches. Employees were not able to get to the top of the mountain to record snow totals Feb. 11. Using this measurement, Grandfather Mountain has had 8.3 inches of snow for the winter-to-date compared to the norm of 37.42 inches for this point in the season.

Grandfather Mountain measures precipitation at multiple locations on the mountain. An automatic weighing precipitation gauge on the corner of the Top Shop parking lot recorded 2.61 inches of liquid precipitation (rain and the melted equivalent of snow) this month. Entrance gate employees recorded 7 inches of snow for the month, and the naturalist staff recorded 5 inches at the weather equipment near the Fudge Shop.

Wind gusts more than 60 miles per hour were recorded six times. The highest three-second gust during the month was 84.2 mph recorded Feb. 12. For more information, visit

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