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Grandfather Mountain Experiences One Of The Wettest Years On Record

WFMY-TV Greensboro logo WFMY-TV Greensboro 1/10/2019 WFMY News 2 Digital
Grandfather Mountain © Frank Ruggiero Grandfather Mountain

According to the recording site at Grandfather's Nature Museum, 123.62 inches of rain fell on the mountain last year. 

“That’s 10 feet of water!” said Amy Renfranz, director of education for the Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation, the nonprofit organization that owns and operates the Linville, N.C., nature park. “Though we had several big days of rain and snow, most of it fell in small amounts throughout the year.”

The biggest rain even took place on May 19, 2018, with 6.41 inches of rain and September 17, 2018, with 5.84 inches of rain. 

“This record year nearly doubles our annual average of 63.13 inches,” Renfranz said. “In comparison, Seattle only received 35.73 inches of precipitation in 2018 — a markedly dry year for the Western states. New York City received 46.78.”

In 2017, Grandfather Mountain recorded only 73.73 inches of rain. The mountain's rainiest day in history was September 8, 2004, on which 11.3 inches were measured. 

Recorded by the weather station at the Mile High Swinging Bridge, the mountain's wettest year came in 1979 with 89.25 inches of rain. 

The same exact station recorded 77.36 inches of rain in 2018 (the fifth wettest on record) however, due to high winds and closures from inclement weather, rain data collected at the bridge often amounts to lower totals than other collection areas on the mountain — in this case, significantly lower.

The Nature Museum measurements are made in accordance with the Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network, also referred to as CoCoRaHS. 

Grandfather Mountain’s naturalists have been recording and reporting data to CoCoRaHS since 2011, and 2018 marks the wettest year on record, according to that data.

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