The windy snowy conditions left a front yard full of these unusual “snow bales” or “snow rollers” at the home of Mike and Alison Ryan in Fairfield County. The largest are about a foot in diameter and almost two feet long. They seem to be around structures and not in open fields.
According to Wikipedia, snow rollers are a rare meteorological phenomenon. The following conditions are needed for snow rollers to form:
- The ground must be covered by a layer of ice to which snow will not stick.
- The layer of ice must be covered by wet, loose snow with a temperature near the melting point of ice.
- The wind must be strong enough to move the snow rollers, but not strong enough to blow them apart.
- Alternatively, gravity can move the snow rollers as when a snowball, such as those that will fall from a tree or cliff, lands on steep hill and begins to roll down the hill.