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Transmission towers and power lines in East Texas snow from the 2010 North American Blizzard

Snowmageddon, Snowpocalypse, and Snowzilla are portmanteaus of the word "snow" with "Armageddon", "Apocalypse", and "Godzilla" respectively. Snowmageddon and Snowpocalypse were used in the popular press in Canada during January 2009,[1] and was also used in January 2010 by The Guardian reporter Charlie Brooker to characterise the sensationalist reaction of television news to a period of snowfall across the UK.[2] The Washington Post, out of Washington, D.C., ran an online poll asking for reader feedback prior to the February 5–6, 2010 North American blizzard on February 4, 2010,[3] and several blogs, including the Washington Post's own blog, followed that up by using either "Snowmageddon" or "Snowpocalypse" before, during, and after the storm hit.[4]

The Washington Post also popularized the term "kaisersnoze" (see Keyser Söze) in response to the February snowstorms.[5]

During the evening preceding the first blizzard hitting Washington, D.C., most of the United States federal government closed, and press coverage continued to characterize the storm using either "Snowmageddon", "Snowpocalypse", or both.[6]

The term "Snowpocalypse" was used in the Pacific Northwest to refer to a snowstorm in December 2008.[7][8]

The 2008 children's book Winter Blast by Chris Wright, uses the term "snowmageddon" in the storyline of the book.[9]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Ibbotson, Heather (January 26, 2010). "Mild winter easy on city budget". Brantford Expositor. Retrieved February 11, 2010. "At this time last year, we were referring to it as snowmageddon," Madden said.
  2. ^ Brooker, Charlie (January 16, 2010). "Charlie Brooker's Screen burn". The Guardian. Retrieved February 11, 2010. As far as the 24-hour rolling networks were concerned, this wasn't a freak weather condition. This was war. Death from the skies. Earth versus the Ice Warriors. Snowmageddon.
  3. ^ "Vote for storm name, Twitter hashtag & snow total". Washington Post. February 4, 2010. Retrieved February 11, 2010.
  4. ^ Broder, John M.; Healy, Jack (February 5, 2010). "East Coast Is Hit by 'Potentially Epic Snowstorm'". The New York Times. Retrieved February 11, 2010. bracing for what newspapers and bloggers have been calling the "snowpocalypse," or "snowmageddon,"
  5. ^ Gainor, Dan M. (February 10, 2010). "Washington's New Four-Letter Word: Snow". Fox News. Reuters. Retrieved February 12, 2010. D.C. residents have turned to social media like Twitter and Facebook to vent their frustration with terms like "snOMG," "snowmageddon", "snowpocalypse", and "kaisersnoze".
  6. ^ "Powerful blizzard shuts down US capital". Google News. AFP. February 5, 2010. Retrieved February 11, 2010. The storm, dubbed "Snowpocalypse" and "Snowmageddon" by many locals,
  7. ^ "Snowpocalypse Now". North Kitsap Herald. 23 December 2008. Retrieved 17 January 2012.
  8. ^ Wheaton, Sarah (19 December 2009). "Snowpocalypse Now, and Then". Retrieved 17 January 2012.
  9. ^ Wright, Chris (2008). Winter Blast. Mountain Valley Publishing. ISBN 978-1-934940-10-5. Retrieved February 11, 2010.
  10. ^ a b Capital Weather Gang
  11. ^ Angela Fritz (January 22, 2016). "We hereby name this winter storm 'Snowzilla'". The Washington Post. Washington, D.C. Retrieved January 22, 2016.
  12. ^ "'Snowmageddon': cleanup begins after record Newfoundland storm". The Guardian. Canada. Reuters. 18 January 2020.
  13. ^ Marx, Paris (26 January 2020). "Snowmageddon has come and gone. Let's hope metro St. John's learns the right lessons". CBC News.