WeatherTalk: Snow makes a crunch in the cold

The colder it is, the more pronounced the crunch becomes.

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When the weather gets cold, snow develops a crunchy sound when getting stepped on. It can remind one of stepping on Styrofoam or fine china dishes. This crunch is directly related to the temperature. The colder it is, the more pronounced the crunch becomes.

This is because the snow crystals become increasingly rigid in colder temperatures. An accumulation of snowflakes is largely air with all those snowflakes jumbled together. As they are crushed underfoot, they shatter. In warmer weather, the crystals melt as they break, and so make much less of a sound.

When people walk outside in very cold weather, their steps become a rhythm track. Walking through snow on a particularly frigid night creates such a noticeable noise one wonders if those on the inside of their houses can hear the ruckus.

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