Snow in Florida? Viewers capture videos that appear to be flurries; turns out to be graupel

Posted at 11:39 PM, Jan 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-23 04:22:14-05

Cold weather in South Florida had some people convinced they saw snow Wednesday.

Viewers from Lake Worth to Port St. Lucie sent in videos of what appeared to be flurries falling during the early afternoon.

However, temperatures were not cold enough to sustain snowfall. Instead, the National Weather Service says Palm Beach County and the Treasure Coast saw a different kind of icy precipitation called graupel.

Amber Castro in Port St. Lucie captured cellphone video of the graupel falling, though she thought she was recording snowfall.

“I genuinely thought it was just light snow,” Castro said.

The Michigan native has seen her share of snow over the years. “It really had me convinced,” Castro said. “I called the neighbors and said bring the kids out back! It’s snowing!”

Graupel can look similar to snow. It is more like a soft, icy pellet. “I’ve never heard of graupel before … I guess you learn something new every day.”

Castro says Wednesday’s weather was a reminder of why she chose to move to South Florida almost seven years ago. She’s happy to live where snow is rare.

The National Weather Service has not recorded snowfall in South Florida since 1977.