Snow Rollers!

There is a weird weather phenomenon that has been going on in NE Ohio that has left yards, fields, and even roofs littered with swiss roll looking snow balls called snow rollers.

Snow rollers up close

These oddly shaped snowballs  occur naturally when the conditions are just right. There has to be a layer of ice with a layer of loose, wet snow on top that is near the melting point. Finally the wind has to be strong enough to move the rollers but not enough to damage them.

snow rollers up close 2

The wind pushes the balls of snow along the ground, much the same way you would when making a snowman. It literally rolls them along, which is why they have layers like a swiss roll.

Snow Rollers scene

They can occur on flat ground but seem to be more common on slight hills. Almost every open area has hundreds of them. I’ve even seen a few on roofs today.

snow rollers med close