It Looked Like Hail, But Was It Graupel?

Did we have graupel? Here is graupel on the ground in Germany (photo from Wikimedia Commons)

18 October 2021

Yesterday evening around 6pm rain obscured the northeastern horizon — Larimer, East Liberty and Shadyside. Eventually the cloud moved over us and dropped white pellets that clicked on the windows and bounced off the windowsills. There was no storm, just a dark cloud that ought to have been raining — except it wasn’t wet.

Was it hail? Was it sleet? Was it graupel?

I wasn’t outdoors to examine the pellets — they melted almost instantly — but I thought of graupel, also called snow pellets, because it was seven years ago this month (4 Oct 2014) that I first saw and wrote about it: Graupeling.

Did any of you see yesterday’s icy precipitation in the East End? What was it?

The National Weather Service has a helpful chart.

Chart from National Weather Service in Pittsburgh on 4 October 2014

(photo from Wikimedia Commons, chart from the National Weather Service in Pittsburgh)

2 thoughts on “It Looked Like Hail, But Was It Graupel?

  1. It sounded like hail, but didn’t look like it. It did melt almost immediately. Such an interesting weather event watching the dark cloud slowly approach us in Shadyside. Thanks for this posting.

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