It was as mild a start to the snow season as can be – but it counts in record books anyway.
The fifth of an inch of snow recorded Sunday at the Buffalo Niagara International Airport added up to the first measurable snowfall of the season for the Buffalo metropolitan area, according to the National Weather Service.
"It is official," said meteorologist Aaron Reynolds. "There are some minor accumulations. Much of it's been real light."
While there was just that trace at the airport, some areas south and east of the city, including in Chautauqua and Cattaraugus counties, reported as much as three inches Sunday. And some areas were projected to see as much as six inches by Monday, as bands of lake-effect snow "get a little more organized," he said. A National Weather Service winter weather advisory remains in effect for Southern Erie, Chautauqua, Cattaraugus and Wyoming counties until 1 p.m. Monday.
The advisory urges travelers to be aware of rapidly changing road conditions and visibility due to narrow bands of lake-effect snow.
Weather was blamed for a roll-over accident shortly after 2 p.m. Sunday on South Stockton-Cassadaga Road in the Town of Stockton. Chautauqua County Sheriff's deputies found that a vehicle operated by teenager slid on the snowy pavement. When the driver couldn't regain control, he went into a ditch, the vehicle overturned and it came to a rest on it's roof. The driver was treated at the scene.
Several customers pulled into the parking lot of Add Lumber True Value hardware store in Westfield in Chautauqua County with snow on their vehicles Sunday morning, according to store manager Dale Parks.
"Nothing in the village, just up on the hill," Parks said of the snowfall.
Ice melt and shovels were popular items Sunday, as was insulation and roof patch, he said.
"We got some, an inch or two. Nothing to write home about," said Bob Engel, owner of Shamel Milling Co. in East Concord.
The light snow arrived at an ideal time for hunters. Sunday was the second day of shotgun season, and a coating of snow on the ground helps hunters to better see deer and track them, Engel said.
"Everybody that's out today is probably very happy," he said of Mother Nature's assist.
Forecasters predicted more lake-effect snow for overnight and Monday, but "nothing major," said Reynolds. "We expect that to kind of wind down as we go into Monday evening."
On Tuesday, temperatures will climb back into the low 50s. But the warmer weather won't last. High temperatures are expected to reach into the upper 30s on Wednesday, which also will feature generally dry weather for pre-holiday travel.
The drier conditions also should extend into Thanksgiving Day, according to the National Weather Service forecast, when highs are projected to reach the upper 30s.