A 2003 winter storm dumped a record 27.5 inches of snow in Boston. No. 5 on the list is a 2005 storm that dropped 22.5 inches. The Blizzard of 2013 looks likely to top that, at least.
The meteorological dilettantes among us will periodically prod snowbanks with yardsticks as the Blizzard of 2013 deposits its snow on eastern Massachusetts and beyond this weekend. But when it comes to storm records for Boston, all eyes will be on Logan Airport's snow gauge – the ultimate arbiter.
The Blizzard of 2013, which the Weather Channel as dubbed a somewhat unintimidating winter storm Nemo, is expected to dump at least 24 inches of snow on Boston. Anything over 22.8 inches will guarantee the storm makes the list of the five snowiest storms since 1892, according to records kept at the National Weather Service Forecast Office in Taunton, Mass., which covers southern New England.
For Many Bostonians, the frame of reference for winter storms for now remains the Blizzard of 1978, which struck 35 years ago this week. It dumped 27.1 inches of snow on a city already coping with the leftovers from a storm three weeks earlier. That earlier storm brought 21 inches of snow.
The '78 storm remains the snowiest on record for Providence, R.I., although it ranks No. 10 for Worcester, Mass.. In Hartford, Conn., the '78 storm is tied for eighth place with a storm that hit in December 1947 and dumped 16.9 inches of snow on the city.