Minneapolis Snowfall Totals & Accumulation Averages

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This page pulls together information on when, how much and how often Minneapolis, Minnesota has snow.

There are data and descriptions here of how many days it snows and the total amount of snowfall that Minneapolis usually gets. There are also monthly and yearly counts of the days that the city normally has heavy snowstorms and deep snow accumulated on the ground. Plus there's information on when Minneapolis can expect the first and last snowfalls of the season.

All the numbers are averages, based on climate data gathered from 1981 to 2010 at the Minneapolis — St. Paul International Airport.

How Often it Snows in Minneapolis

This first table lists monthly and yearly totals for amount of snow and how many days it snows at least 0.1 inches (0.25 centimetres).

Average total snowfall and days with fresh snow in Minneapolis
Days   Inches Centimetres
  8.2 January 12.1   30.7
  6.8 February   7.8   19.8
  5.4 March 10.2   25.9
  2.0 April   2.5     6.4
  0.1 May   0.0     0.0
  0.6 October   0.6     1.5
  5.2 November   9.3   23.6
  9.0 December 11.5   29.2
37.3 Year 54.0 137.2

These averages don't show how much the snowfall in Minneapolis varies from year to year.

In December, for instance, one in four years totals over 16.2 inches of snow. Another 25 percent of years receive less than 6.6 inches for the month.

Similarly in January, fresh snowfall in the heaviest years amounts to over 18.2 inches, while the lightest years get less than 4.7 inches.

New snow for February ranges from over 11.4 inches in heavy snowfall years to under 4.3 inches in light years.

When Minneapolis Has Its First & Last Snowfalls

The first snowfall of winter for Minneapolis usually arrives in November. But at least once every four years, snow comes as early as October.

The season's last snowfall typically happens in April, although at least one in four Aprils receive no fresh snow. Very rarely a few snowflakes land in May.

Minneapolis is normally free of snow every year from June to September.

How Many Snowstorms Minneapolis Gets

Most days of snowfall in Minneapolis leave just a skiff, amounting to less than an inch, of fresh snow on the ground. For 16 days a year on average, the amount of new snow totals at least an inch.

Snowstorms of over five inches a day normally occur a couple times annually. But major blizzards that dump ten inches or more in one day don't happen every year.

Number of days per month and year on average in Minneapolis with a total snowfall of at least 1, 3, 5 or 10 inches
1 inch
2.5 cm
3 inches
7.6 cm
  5 inches
12.7 cm
10 inches
25.4 cm
  3.1 1.1 January 0.4 0.1
  3.0 0.7 February 0.1 0.0
  2.6 1.2 March 0.6 0.1
  0.6 0.2 April 0.1 0.0
  0.1 0.0 October 0.0 0.0
  2.7 0.8 November 0.4 0.1
  3.6 1.0 December 0.4 0.1
15.7 5.0 Year 2.0 0.4

How Much Snow Normally Accumulates in Minneapolis

For nearly all of winter along with some of early spring and late fall, Minneapolis has at least an inch of snow on the ground.

A snowpack that gets to ten or more inches deep can cover the city anytime from November to April. The snow accumulates most during December, January and February. Typically, on six or seven days in January and in February plus another five days in December, the snow depth in Minneapolis tops ten inches.

Average total days per month and year in Minneapolis with snow depth of at least 1, 3, 5 or 10 inches on the ground
1 inch
2.5 cm
3 inches
7.6 cm
  5 inches
12.7 cm
10 inches
25.4 cm
25.6 21.6 January 18.2   6.5
22.2 19.4 February 15.3   6.5
12.8   9.1 March   6.5   2.5
  1.1   0.4 April   0.2   0.1
  7.1   3.9 November   2.5   0.8
21.5 15.1 December 11.5   5.2
90.3 69.5 Year 54.2 21.6
Reference

National Climatic Data Center. NOAA's 1981-2010 Climate Normals.

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