Snowing and Winter Weather – English Vocabulary Lesson

Michael Uncategorized Leave a Comment

When it is very cold, we talk about Jack Frost and Old Man Winter. We say things like:

  • Jack Frost is outside.
  • Old Man winter came for a visit.

The news often mentions the temperature and the wind chill factor (or) wind chill. This is the temperature it feels like because of the cold temperature plus the wind.

Temperature + Wind = Wind Chill Factor

  • It’s 32 degrees but the wind chill factor is 20. It feels like 20 degrees because of the wind.

When it is a damp, rainy, and cold day, we often use raw:

  • It’s so raw outside today.
  • It was pretty raw yesterday.


When it snows, and the ground is cold, we use stick to describe the situation when the snow hits the ground and doesn’t melt. The snow sticks to the ground.

  • The snow is starting to stick.
  • It’s snowing, and the snow is sticking.

Of course when the ground is warm and the snow melts as it hits the ground we say:

  • The snow isn’t sticking.
  • It’s snowing, but the snow’s not sticking.

When the snow sticks, and then more snow falls, the newly fallen snow starts to stick to the snow that fell before. We use accumulate or pile up:

  • The snow is starting to accumulate (or) The snow is starting to pile up.
  • The snow is accumulating (or) The snow is piling up.
  • About 5 inches of snow accumulated overnight (or) About 5 inches of snow piled up overnight.

We also use the noun form, accumulation:

  • We are expecting an accumulation of 5 to 10 inches of snow.
  • We are expecting snow accumulation of 5 to 10 inches.

Here’s what the city and people do during a snowstorm:

  • The salt trucks come out and they salt the roads.
  • The snowplows come out and they plow the roads.
  • I shovel my driveway and the sidewalk.

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