Consider this your annual graupel report from Illinois.

We didn't used to have graupel. We had sleet. Was there different kinds of sleet? Of course. You had wet sleet. Hard sleet, Hard and wet sleet. Freezing sleet. Dry sleet. We were perfectly content to have snow, sleet, and possibly a flurry or two. If it got really bad you called it a blizzard and stayed home.

Then like 3 years ago it exploded.


You can see it spike every winter since 2009 and then 10 years later BOOM!! every meteorologist from Rochester to Billings was using it. It also looks like Montana was hit especially hard.

What's with the explosion? Is "Big Graupel" behind this? Another instance of media manipulation by the gubmint? I'm not saying, just saying.

The best part about knowing about graupel is that you can be annoying about it. It's the weather equivalent of correcting someone about Frankenstein's Monster.

Well, AHCTually, I think what's falling from the sky is technically grauple.

It's literally one of my favorite things to do. I'm not well.

So how do you achieve this superpower of identifying grauple on an especially crappy winter day? You just have to remember one delicious ice cream product.

If what's falling from the sky looks like Dippin' Dots, the delicious ice cream of the future.

It's such a good identifier that I had to sift through tweets about graupel that were calling it falling Dippin' Dots.

It's been a good year for Dippin Dots. They went viral during the College World Series as well by one of my favorite college athletes of all time.

He ended up getting some free Dippin' Dots and 15 minutes of fame with that viral video.

The National Weather service officially describes it as opaque, white snow, pellets/soft hail (like Dippin' Dots.) It's even there in the definition.

Also according to the National Weather Service it forms above freezing at the surface and very cold aloft in connective showers/ squalls driven by an unstable lower atmosphere.

I have no idea what that means. I'll ask Joey Marino.


I see you pushing more terms on us. Never had squalls when I was a kid either. He's part of it folks.

Stay safe this winter.

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