Snow vs Hail: Difference and Comparison

Snow is so fascinating, and everyone loves to play with snow. Snowfall is seen in cold areas or regions, mainly in European countries. Snowfall is also seen in Indian states like Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh etc.

People confuse Snow and Hail, thinking that both are the same. But Snow is normal, and they are called hail when the snows get bigger.

Key Takeaways

  1. Snow is precipitation that falls from the sky as ice crystals, while hail is frozen precipitation that falls as pellets or lumps of ice.
  2. Snow is formed when water vapor in the atmosphere freezes into ice crystals, whereas hail is formed when raindrops are carried upward by strong thunderstorm updrafts, where they freeze and fall to the ground as hailstones.
  3. Snow is less dense than hail and accumulates on the ground, while hailstones are harder and can cause damage to property and crops.

Snow vs Hail

Snow is a normal ice globule with an average small size and does not harm anyone. And Hail is more prominent in size than snow and may cause damage to a person if it falls on them because of its weight.

Snow vs Hail

Snow is an iced form of water processed in the clouds, and when shadows become heavy, they fall off to the ground. It has a look of crushed cotton and a crystalline structure.

Hail is also a form of snow but is heavier, bigger, and looks like a circular object. Hail is processed by the heavy breeze propelling moisture altogether.

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Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonSnowHail
DefinitionSnow is a normal ice globule with an average small size and does not harm anyone.Hail is also a form of snow, but it is heavier, more prominent in size, and looks like a circular object.
Size Snowdrops or snowflakes have regular small sizes of around 1.3 centimetres.The Hail is more prominent and is around 15 centimetres.
StructureThey have a crystalline structure, and it looks like six-sided crystal.They are spherical crystalline structure and has thick layers of snow.
Making processSnow is an iced form of water processed in the clouds, and when shadows become heavy, they fall off to the ground.Hail is processed by the heavy breeze propelling moisture altogether. These processed water drops get iced and become circular.
Forming cloudsIt is formed in clouds named Nimbostratus.It is formed in clouds named Cumulonimbus.
Occurrence reasonIt occurs when there is a decrease in the temperature of a particular region.It occurs only when there is the worst atmosphere or storm atmosphere.

What is Snow?

Snow is formed when the water drops are compressed inside the clouds, and when shadows become heavy, they fall off. Snowfall occurs in low-temperature regions like European countries with consistently low temperatures.

Snowflakes have a standard small size and look like crushed cotton having six faces with a crystalline structure. Snowfall, when occurring in heavy quantities, may cause destruction.

Their size is around 1.3 centimetres, and countries with heavy snowfall during the winter season are Finland, Austria, Norway, France, and Switzerland.

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Snow

What is Hail?

Hail occurs only when the atmosphere worsens and there is a chance of windstorms. They are bigger in size and looks like circular object.

When the moisture gets together because of the propelling force of the heavy wind, they form hail. They have a very thick layer of snow covering them. And it can harm people if they get hit by them.

Hailstone is referred to as a single piece of hail. It varies in size, sometimes bigger depending upon the storm’s strength. It occurs only for 4 to 11 minutes, but it can only harm so many things.

hailstone

Main Differences Between Snow and Hail

  1. Snow is an iced form of water processed in the clouds, and when shadows become heavy, they fall off to the ground. Hail is processed by the heavy breeze propelling moisture altogether.
  2. Snows have a crystalline structure, and it looks like six-sided crystal. Hails have spherical crystalline structures and thick layers of snow.
Difference Between Snow and Hail
References
  1. https://agupubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1029/RG026i001p00149
  2. https://dl.acm.org/doi/abs/10.1145/1653662.1653686

Last Updated : 11 June, 2023

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23 thoughts on “Snow vs Hail: Difference and Comparison”

  1. Snow is one of the most beautiful weather events that constantly impresses me. I completely agree with the text. The difference between snow and hail is very interesting, I learned a lot from it. Thank you!

    Reply

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