Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2008 | 4:20 p.m.
In Today's Sun
National Weather Service records show that snowfall that sticks on the ground and piles up occurs about once every 20 years.
Most people envision sun and palm trees swaying in a gentle breeze when they dream about their Las Vegas vacations, but those arriving in Las Vegas between October and mid-April may be surprised to find snowflakes falling.
According to National Weather Service records, the most snowfall recorded in the Las Vegas Valley was 16.7 inches in January 1949, followed by January 1974 with 13.4 inches and January 1979 with 9.9 inches.
The earliest snow in the year ever recorded arrived on Nov. 15, 1964 when 3 inches fell, followed by another inch on Nov. 16, 1964.
The latest snow ever recorded for the winter season in the valley was a trace on April 4, 1958.
The last snowfall in the valley before this week was when a trace fell on Dec. 22, 2006 during a mixture of rain and snow. However, the Summerlin area got a few flakes of snow on Oct. 11 this year.
Measurable snow officially fell in Las Vegas on Dec. 30, 2003, with 1.3 inches on the ground, the weather service said.
Snow statistics through Jan. 31, 1996 were recorded at McCarran International Airport. Then the weather service moved its offices two miles southwest to Dean Martin Road and records have been measured there since Feb. 1, 1996.