Hailstones Have Many Names
UPDATED March 21, 2011
By WeatherBug Meteorologists
Pea, Hen egg, and Teacup. No, this isn`t a shopping list, or a list of characters out of a fairy tale. These are just a couple of adjectives used to describe hail. Yes, hail, the ball of ice that falls from a thunderstorm.
Like many other things in life, hail comes in different shapes and sizes. For consistency, and to make it easier for storm spotters to report, the National Weather Service has come up with a set of names that`s pretty unique and interesting to say the least.
Here they are: (listed by name and diameter size)
Pea one-quarter inch
Penny three-quarter inch
Nickel four-fifths inch
Quarter one inch
Half-Dollar one and one-quarter inch
Ping Pong Ballone and one-half inch
Golf Ball one and three-quarter inch
Hen Egg two inches
Tennis Ball two and one-half inch
Baseball two and three-quarter inch
Teacup three inches
Grapefruit four inches
Softball four and one-half inch
The largest hailstone ever recorded in the United States was found in Vivian, S.D., on July 23, 2010. The stone measured 8 inches in diameter with a circumference of 18.62 inches. It weighted 1.93 pounds.
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Photo Credit: Lisa Hennis Sylvarena, Miss. Golf-ball size hail storm on April 22, 2005
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