Snow Rollers Blow into Tioga County

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MAINESBURG -- Any way the wind may blow, doesn't really matter. Until it does.

"I thought my grandkids rolled a couple of snowballs on our front yard and then we went to Mansfield, and I saw all these,” said Floyd McCaslin.

They are called snow rollers and according to Newswatch 16's Chief Meteorologist Kurt Aaron, they are pretty rare.

"It takes a lot of snow and a lot of wind," said Floyd McCaslin.

Jon Shaw had no idea these precarious looking snow donuts existed until he spotted them along Route 6 near Troy.

"I thought it was really cool, and I stopped here to get some pictures," said Shaw.

According to our Chief Meteorologist Kurt Aaron, it takes just the right amount of wind, the right temperature, and two types of snow to form a snow roller. The wind pushes chunks of snow along the ground causing them to pick up more snow. It's almost the same way to build a snowman.

"I'm just glad that snowflakes don't fall like that. They would knock us out," said McCaslin.

"I've never seen anything like them before in my life. I've never seen nothing like it. A lot of them have the holes in the center of them," said Steven Aumick

The center is hollow. Kurt says the middle layer of the snow roller is weak. It can be blown out by the wind.

"It's nice to have pictures of them, especially if we may never see them again,” said McCaslin.

Depending on the weather the snow piles can disappear as quickly as they are formed. There are still hundreds in the field in Tioga County, but if people want to see them, they better do it now before they roll away.

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