Getting a huge amount of snow during the winter is nothing out of the ordinary for Northeast Iowa and Southwest Wisconsin. What IS unusual, is when we get dumped on, in the second week in April!

In 1973, from April 8th to April 10, the area received up to 20 inches of snow. It was considered the worst April blizzard in Iowa's history.

Record snowfall was reported after that 1973 storm: 20.3 inches in Belle Plaine, just over 19 inches in Dubuque, 16 inches in Lansing and New Hampton.

Image from National Weather Service
Image from National Weather Service

It wasn't just the heavy, wet snow, either: winds of up to 70 miles an hour produced white-out conditions, plus piling drifts up to 16 feet high.

Meanwhile, yours truly, at that time a senior at Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin High School, got out the shovel, and dug my 1962 Ford Falcon out of our driveway (which was about 35 feet long).

Why, you may ask, couldn't I just wait until it melted?

Well, my girlfriend of just 2 months was waiting for me at her home, in nearby Marquette, Iowa, which also saw massive amounts of snow.

Sometimes you just need the right kind of incentive to clear your path...


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