Sounding and Crystal Analysis, January 11, 2010 -  Buffalo, NY

The Buffalo, NY sounding for the evening of January 11th shows a deep saturated layer with temperatures in the sweet spot of -12C to -18C.  Even aloft there should be enough moisture in the layer to promote crystal growth with temperatures colder than -20C.  This matches up well with Magono and Lee diagram at the bottom of this page that shows the type of crystals I recorded on that evening.   Sounding courtesy of  NOAA's Storm Prediction Center (SPC)



Below is Magono and Lee's diagram for snow crystal type based on the temperature and moisture profile of the atmosphere.  I highlighted the type of crystals I photographed on that evening, mainly "Bullets With Plates - Cp2a" and "Columns With Plates - Cp1a".