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We examine the relative effect of warming events (storms) and snow cover on thermodynamic growth of Arctic sea ice in winter. We use a 1-D snow and ice thermodynamic model to perform sensitivity experiments. Observations from the winter period of the Norwegian young sea ICE (N-ICE2015) campaign north of Svalbard are used to initiate and force the model. The N-ICE2015 winter was characterized by frequent storm events that brought pulses of heat and moisture, and a thick snow cover atop the sea ice (0.3–0.5 m). By the end of the winter, sea-ice bottom growth was negligible. We show that the thermodynamic effect of storms to the winter sea-ice growth is controlled by the amount of snow on sea ice. For 1.3 m initial ice thickness, the decrease in ice growth caused by the warming events ranged from −1.4% (for 0.5 m of snow) to −7.5% (for snow-free conditions). The decrease in sea-ice growth caused by the thick snow (0.5 m) was more important, ranging from −17% (with storms) to −23% (without storms). The results showcase the critical role of snow on winter Arctic sea-ice growth.