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    What Makes a Bad Winter: Cold or Snow?

    February 2, 2011; 5:00 AM ET
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    With a barrage of winter storms and bone-chilling cold that won't seem to go away, many people are sick and tired of Old Man Winter.

    But how does this current winter compare to last year? As far as cold and snow are concerned, it's all relative. While some places have more snow, others have more cold.

    The memories of the Snowmaggeddon and the Snowicane are probably still fresh in some of your minds. Last February's blizzards dumped feet of snow on the East Coast.

    Prior to the major snow events in February 2010, some cities on the East Coast had snow amounts very close to what they have so far this year.

    Philadelphia had the snowiest winter on record last year with an astounding 78.7 inches.

    However, this time last year the city had around 28 inches, much less than the 37.8 inches the city has so far this winter, as of Jan. 31.

    Until the anniversaries of these blizzards come around, this year's snow totals so far dwarf what fell by this time last year in some places.

    New York has 56.1 inches of snow so far, already surpassing last winter's total of 51.4 inches. By Jan. 31 last year, the city recorded a mere 14.5 inches. New York's snow total skyrocketed in February, mostly from the 36.9 inches fell in that month alone.

    Likewise, Boston had about 28.5 inches of snow by Jan. 31, 2010. This year, the city has more than 60 inches, far higher than last winter's total of 35.7 inches.

    As for the South, Atlanta has already exceeded last year's snow total of 5.3 inches with 5.8 inches as of Jan. 31.

    Farther west, Minneapolis is having quite the winter themselves. As of Jan. 31, the city recorded about 56 inches of snow, exceeding last winter's total by about 16 inches. This time last year, Minneapolis had 27 inches.

    While the snow statistics may not be remarkable in some cities, the persistent cold certainly is.

    Washington, D.C., has recorded a mere 9.4 inches of snow so far this winter, compared to the 24 they had this time last year. However, from Dec. 1 to Jan. 31, the city has recorded 43 days of below-normal temperatures, already exceeding last year's December and January total of 33 days.

    Likewise, from Dec. 1 to Jan. 31, Philadelphia recorded 45 days with below-normal temperatures. From Dec. 1 to Jan. 31 last year, the city had 29 days below normal.

    Other cities that follow suit are New York City, Buffalo and Chicago.

    However, the winter is far from over. A major Groundhog Day storm lurks around the corner, and AccuWeather.com Chief Long Range Forecaster Joe Bastardi is calling for more cold and winter storms by the season's end.

    So while this winter and last winter have both been remarkable, you'll have to decide for yourself if cold or the snow makes the season worse.

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