Surprise April snow catches forecasters – and flowers – off guard

SALEM – In another of Mother Nature’s April Fool’s jokes this season, just before afternoon commute time on April 4, skies dumped between 4 and 7 inches of sleet and fluffy, wet snow on the Roanoke and New River Valley.

Numerous accidents happened in the Christiansburg area by mid-afternoon, with several drivers flipping or losing their Jeeps and pickup trucks on Rt. 460.

Schools in Salem and Roanoke County were out for the Easter break week, but others in the New River Valley opened two hours late on April 5.

Snow covered daffodils and other blooming bulbs and created winter sculptures on red maple blooms and branches of other hardwoods waking from the winter. For the second time in two weeks, snow frosted blossoms of a large purple magnolia on the Salem City Hall.

The weather’s fickle nature was apparent again the following day, when temperatures hit the mid-60s. Predictions were for 70s and mid-70s by the following week. People are wondering if spring is really here this time.


more recommended stories