Several satellites captured views of the frozen landscape from above, observing saltwater sea ice in East Coast harbors and freshwater ice in the Great Lakes and other inland waterways. Snow and ice have blanketed land surfaces from the Mississippi River to the Atlantic Ocean, from the Carolinas to Maine.
On February 20, 2015, the Operational Land Imager (OLI) on Landsat 8 captured a natural-color view (above) of the U.S.-Canadian border along the Niagara River. Note how a manmade ice boom keeps the mouth of the Niagara River clear near Buffalo, New York. As of February 27, Lake Erie was 95.9 percent covered in ice, while Lake Ontario was at 48.9 percent. Overall, the five Great Lakes combined were 84.1 percent ice covered.
Below you can see a trio of images showing the Mid-Atlantic region. The first image was captured on February 24 by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite. It shows ice in Delaware Bay—between New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Delaware—and in the northern end of the Chesapeake Bay between Maryland and Delaware. The following two images (from February 15) come from the Landsat 8 OLI and show closer views, including ice streamers.
This winter has kept the weather statisticians busy. Bangor, Maine, is on course for its coldest month ever recorded, and Syracuse, New York, has had 20 days below zero (Fahrenheit), a new winter record. On February 23-24 alone, at least 67 temperature records fell. Montpelier, Vermont, dropped to -23°F; Glens Falls, New York, dipped to -26°F; and Columbus, Ohio, was at -11°F. Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, home of the infamous weather-predicting groundhog, touched -20°F.
By late February, Boston, Massachusetts, had reached 100 inches of snow and was just a few inches short of the all-time record; the yearly normal is 32 inches. Bangor, Maine, has seen 110 inches of snow compared to the norm of 48. Most of the New York metropolitan area had double its usual snowfall. And the ocean around Nantucket was so cold and ice-filled that waves took on the consistency of slush, as shown in these photographs.
NASA: Deep Freeze in the Eastern United States - Baby. It’s Cold Outside - 03.02.15
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