12/31/10: NEW YEARS EVE HEADLINE INFORMATION

Issued at 2:33 PM CST, Friday, December 31st, 2010

.All headlines issued by the National Weather Service Duluth, Minnesota.

*WINTER STORM WARNING*

Timing:

Until 12 PM CST Saturday.

Counties included in the warning:

Koochiching MN…Itasca MN…Cass MN…Crow Wing MN…Northern Aitkin MN…Central and Northern St. Louis MN.

Some cities included in the warning:

International Falls MN…Littlefork MN…Bigfork MN…Togo MN…Grand Rapids MN…Cass Lake MN…Walker MN…Leader MN…Brainerd MN…Hill City MN…Hibbing MN…Cotton MN…Ely MN…and Crane Lake MN.

Discussion:

Snow will spread north into the Iron Range, Brainerd Lakes, and borderland region This Evening with snow continuing Overnight before tapering off to light snow and flurries on Saturday.  Total snowfall accumulations by Saturday will range from 5-8″.

Main impacts:  Heavier bands of snow with hourly snowfall rates up to one inch an hour combined with gusty northeast winds causing visibilities to fall to around a half mile Tonight.  Driving conditions will become difficult in Northern Minnesota Tonight with roads becoming snow covered and slippery.

A winter storm warning means heavy accumulation of snow will occur.  Expect extremely slippery and dangerous snow covered roads.  If you travel, exercise extreme caution and allow extra time to reach your destination.  Let someone know your travel route and expected arrival time.  Have a working cell phone in case you become stranded.  Keep a winter survival kit in your vehicle, including a flashlight, food, and water.

*WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY*

Timing:

Until 6 AM CST Saturday.

Counties included in the advisory:

Cook MN…Lake MN…Southern St. Louis MN…Carlton MN…Pine MN…and Southern Aitkin MN.

Some cities included in the advisory:

Grand Portage MN…Hovland MN…Grand Marais MN…Isabella MN…Finland MN…Silver Bay MN…Two Harbors MN…Duluth MN…Floodwood MN…Cloquet MN…Moose Lake MN…McGrath MN…and Aitkin MN.

Discussion:

Snow will spread north through the advisory area This Evening, the snow could be moderate to heavy at times with visibilities as low as a half mile due to falling and blowing snow.  Snow will taper off during the late Evening and Overnight hours from south to north.  Total snowfall accumulations of 2-4″ with isolated 5″ totals are expected by early Saturday.

Reduce speed and allow extra time to reach your destination.  Use low beam headlights in snow.  Exercise caution approaching intersections and stop lights.  Stopping distances will increase greatly on snow covered roads.

*WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY*

Timing:

Until 6 AM CST Saturday.

Counties included in the advisory:

Douglas WI…Burnett WI…and Washburn WI.

Some cities included in the advisory:

Superior WI…Solon Springs WI…Danbury WI…Grantsburg WI…Minong WI…and Spooner WI.

Discussion:

Snow will develop This Evening before ending late Tonight.  Some sleet or freezing rain could mix with the snow.  Total snowfall accumulations of 1-3″ are expected by late Tonight with minimal accumulations of ice.  Visibilities could drop to a mile or less at times This Evening as the snow bands move through.

Tim

12/31/10: Friday’s Weather Report

Issued at 1:03 PM CST, Friday, December 31st, 2010

Final snowfall reports from the winter storm that hit Northern Minnesota on Thursday, December 30th, 2010.  Source:  NWS Duluth, Minnesota.

7 miles south of Bigfork, MN (Itasca county)  12.1″
15 miles north of Grand Rapids, MN (Itasca county)  11.0″
Walker, MN (Cass county)  9.5″
Chisholm, MN (St. Louis county)  9.0″
5 miles north of Virginia, MN (St. Louis county)  8.0″
5 miles east of Leader, MN (Cass county)  7.0″
International Falls, MN (Koochiching county)  6.6″
Breezy Point, MN (Crow Wing county)  6.5″
Ely, MN (St. Louis county)  6.2″
Nashwauk, MN (Itasca county)  6.1″
Embarrass, MN (St. Louis county)  6.0″
Pillager, MN (Cass county)  5.5″
Hoyt Lakes, MN (St. Louis county)  5.0″
17 miles northwest of Saginaw, MN (St. Louis county)  4.0″
4 miles northeast of Nisswa, MN (Crow Wing county)  4.0″
Cotton, MN (St. Louis county)  3.9″

*Record Event*

0.83″ of precipitation (most of it rain) fell at Duluth, Minnesota on Thursday, December 30th, 2010.  This broke the 24 hour precipitation record for the 30th of December, the previous record was set in 1871 when 0.81″ of precipitation fell.

Weather tidbits:

*The high temperature has been at or above 32 degrees for 3 days in a row at Duluth, Minnesota (12/29-12/31)  The last time we had three consecutive days at or above freezing was from November 28th-30th.

Forecast Discussion for Northeast Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin

Today’s Weather:

Thursday’s low has moved into Eastern Lake Superior with a pressure of 1006mb early This Afternoon while the next area of low pressure with a pressure of 1002 mb heads into Southwestern Iowa.  Mostly cloudy skies covered our local area at midday with temperatures ranging from the 20s from Hayward to Park Falls and south from there with single digits and teens common in far Northwest Wisconsin, and Northern-Eastern Minnesota.  Winds were out of the north or east under 20 mph.

Today’s Upper Level Analysis:

A powerful negatively tilted storm was lifting N/NE out of the Central Plains.  500mb low was centered over the Southwest half of Nebraska early This Afternoon with a strong upper level trough with 120-180 meter 12 hour 500mb height falls covering the Central Plains per RUC model analysis.  A potent mid level jet >100 knots and a 140 knot upper level jet were in place This Afternoon across portions of the Central Plains per RUC model analysis.

Tonight:

Surface and upper level areas of low pressure will lift north out of Iowa and into the Upper Midwest while a powerful 500mb trough lifts northeast out of the Western High Plains.  This storm will be a quick hitter for most of our local area as the main deformation snow-band(steadiest snow)sets up over the Dakotas and portions of Western Minnesota.  For our area, will have a low level jet increasing to 30-45 knots north/east of this system with warm and moist advection spreading north across our area Tonight.  Strong lift/forcing associated with the low/upper trough will cause bands of snow which will develop to our south while lifting north through Midnight.  Some of this snow could be moderate to heavy at times with one inch per hour snowfall rates quite possible especially in Northern-Eastern Minnesota.  A layer of warm air aloft with 850mb temperatures climbing to around zero degrees C will lift N-NW through Northwest Wisconsin and far Eastern Minnesota for a time early This Evening and this could result in a mixture of snow, sleet, and freezing rain in those areas, at this time it looks like any mixed precipitation would remain south-southeast of the Twin Ports.  Also for This Evening, there is a remote possibility for an isolated thunderstorm in Northwestern Wisconsin.

By late Tonight, the main bands of snow should be pushing into northwest-northern parts of our local area while Northwest Wisconsin, the Twin Ports, Brainerd Lakes, and Eastern parts of Minnesota see some lingering light snow and flurries.

Temperatures Tonight will vary greatly, expect 20s and lower 30s in Northwest Wisconsin while temperatures climb into the 20s in far Eastern Minnesota and the Twin Ports.  Single digits will continue elsewhere.  By dawn Saturday, arctic air will push in from the southwest as low pressure reaches Northern-Northeast Minnesota.  Temperatures by dawn will range from around 5 below to 10 above zero across our area.

Winds This Evening will be out of the east at 10-20 mph with higher gusts.  Overnight, winds will shift to the south in Northwest Wisconsin and Eastern Minnesota with east or north winds for the rest of our area.  Wind speeds will continue to be in the 10-20 mph range late Tonight with some higher gusts.

Note:  Falling snow and blowing snow will lead to poor visibility at times, especially as heavier snow bands move through This Evening.  Visibilities could drop to around a half mile in some locations.

Saturday and Saturday Night:

Powerful storm with it’s surface and upper level low pressure system will pull away from the Upper Midwest during this period.  Cold temperatures and brisk winds with areas of blowing snow will be common Tomorrow and Tomorrow Night with lingering snow showers and flurries, especially on Saturday.  Another 1-2″ of snow could accumulate Tomorrow, mainly in Northern Minnesota.  Highs Tomorrow which for some of us will occur at Midnight Tonight will range from the 20s to lower 30s in Northwest Wisconsin, Twin Ports, and Eastern Minnesota before temperatures drop into the single digits and teens, elsewhere expect highs to be in the single digits above zero.  Low temperatures Saturday Night will range from 10 below to around 5 above zero.  Winds will be out of the north, west, or southwest during this period at 10-20 mph with higher gusts.

Note:  Very cold wind chills ranging from 5 below to 20 below zero will develop in Northern Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin from late Tonight through Saturday Night.

Total snowfall accumulations from Tonight and Saturday:

Northwest Wisconsin:  1-2″ with isolated 3″ amounts, mainly in Burnett and Douglas counties
Eastern Minnesota:  2-4″
Northeast Minnesota:  2-5″
Northcentral Minnesota:  5-8″

Extended Forecast:

Although no big storms are on the horizon from Sunday through the middle of next week, there will be some minor disturbances dropping south/east through the Northern Plains and Upper Midwest as a N-NW 500mb flow develops.  Snow showers and flurries will be possible at times in our area especially by next week.  High temperatures will be in the single digits to around 10 above zero Sunday and Monday with lows in the single digits, teens, to lower 20s below zero Sunday Night and Monday Night.

5 Day Forecast for Duluth/Superior

*WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY*
Timing:  Until 6 AM CST Saturday.

.Tonight…  Occasional light snow showers or flurries through 5 PM, little accumulation expected.  Snow between 5 PM-11 PM with heavier snow showers possible.  Total accumulations of 2-4″.  Windy with areas of blowing snow.  Temperatures rising into the 20s through Midnight, then falling to 5 to 10 above by dawn.  East wind at 15 to 25 mph with gusts to 30 mph This Evening, wind becoming south at 10 to 20 mph Overnight.

.New Years Day…  Breezy and cold.  Mostly cloudy with occasional snow showers and flurries.  Additional accumulations less than one inch.  High 23 to 28 which will occur just after Midnight, then temperatures holding steady in the single digits during the day.  Wind west to southwest at 10 to 20 mph with some higher gusts which will cause areas of blowing snow.  Lowest wind chills of 10 below to 20 below.

.Saturday Night…  Partly cloudy.  Cold.  Low 1 below to 6 below.  Wind west at 10 to 20 mph.  Lowest wind chills around 20 below zero.

.Sunday…  Partly cloudy.  High 5 to 10.

.Sunday Night…  Partly cloudy.  Low 8 below to 13 below.

.Monday…  Snow showers or flurries possible.  High 5 to 10.

.Monday Night…  Flurries possible.  Variable clouds.  Low 5 below to 10 below.

.Tuesday…  Partly sunny.  High 5 to 10.

Normal temperatures for Today:

High:  18
Low:    0

Tim

12/30/10: Thursday’s Weather Report

Issued at 7:56 PM CST, Thursday, December 30th, 2010

Weather headlines:

*Blizzard number one ongoing This Evening over Western-Northern Minnesota…
*Blizzard number two ready to hit in pretty much the same areas late Friday Afternoon through Friday Night…

Snowfall reports from Today’s storm.  Note:  Snow continues to fall This Evening in Northcentral Minnesota so these totals listed below will continue to rise.  Source:  NWS Duluth, Minnesota.

7 miles south of Bigfork, MN (Itasca county)  7.3″
Walker, MN (Cass county)  6.0″
8 miles southwest of Remer, MN (Cass county)  4.0″
1 mile west of Hill City, MN (Aitkin county)  3.0″
Nashwauk, MN (Itasca county)  2.8″
Littlefork, MN (Koochiching county)  2.0″
15 miles south-southeast of McGregor, MN (Aitkin county)  3.0″
Cotton, MN (St. Louis county)  1.8″
Hibbing, MN (St. Louis county)  1.5″
Alborn, MN (St. Louis county)  1.5″

Duluth, MN (St. Louis county)  0.4″ measured at the National Weather Service.  Rain turned to snow late This Afternoon, but has since switched back to rain.

Incredible temperature contrasts across Minnesota Today.

4 PM CST temperatures:

Twin Cities, MN:  40 degrees
Bemidji, MN:  16 degrees
Hallock, MN:  1 degree
Moorhead, MN:  7 degrees
International Falls, MN:  13 degrees
Duluth, MN:  34 degrees

Note:  At 7 PM CST This Evening the temperature was 46 degrees at Winona, Minnesota (southeast part of the state) while it was 1 with a 23 below wind chill at Hallock, Minnesota (northwest part of the state)

Forecast Discussion for Northeast Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin

Today’s Weather:

Strong area of low pressure of 991mb was centered in Southwestern Minnesota as of 6 PM CST with an arctic front stretching from near Ely toward Lake Mille Lacs.  A dangerous winter storm with heavy snow and blizzard conditions developed This Afternoon and is ongoing early This Evening in Westcentral Minnesota with heavy snow also falling in much of Northcentral Minnesota.  The rain/snow line as of 6 PM CST stretched from about Lake Mille Lacs toward Forest Center, Minnesota.  West of that line is where the winter storm was occurring, south-east of that line unseasonable warmth and rainy/drizzly conditions were occurring.  A tremendous amount of moisture for this time of year was in place across the Upper Midwest Today with PWS ranging from 0.50-0.75″!  Also, the 50 degree dewpoint contour has made it as far north as far Southern Iowa This Evening with mid 40 dewpoints reaching as far north as Cedar Rapids, Iowa!  A very tight temperature gradient has become established throughout our local area Today with highs in the 30s and lower 40s across Northwest Wisconsin, the Twin Ports and Eastern Minnesota with single digits and teens from International Falls to Walker.  Winds Today were out of the south, east, or north at 10-20 mph with some higher gusts.

Today’s Upper Level Analysis:

A powerful 500mb trough covered the Western U.S. with 90 meter 12 hour 500mb height falls occurring in the Southwest U.S. This Evening per RUC model analysis along with a 120 knot upper level jet streak in Western Nevada which is adding energy to this strong upper trough.  A southwest flow aloft was in place across the Plains and Upper Midwest out ahead of this upper level trough with a lead system continuing to push northeast through the Northern Plains and Western Great Lakes This Evening.

Tonight:

Dangerous conditions will continue Tonight across Northcentral Minnesota where snow, heavy at times with one inch an hour snowfall rates persisting until around 2AM, thereafter expect  lingering snow although intensities should start to decrease.  Northwest Wisconsin will continue to have areas of drizzle, light rain, and locally dense fog Tonight while locations from Northeast into Eastcentral Minnesota continue to have a mix bag of weather, ranging from snow to sleet to rain to some dense fog…The precipitation in Eastern-Northeast Minnesota should gradually turn over to flurries and light snow late Tonight as colder air spreads into those areas behind strong low pressure which will reach Northwestern Wisconsin Overnight.  Low temperatures Tonight will range from the 30s in Northwest Wisconsin to the single digits below to above zero west of the Iron Range, areas in between-including the Twin Ports and Interstate 35 corridor will have lows in the teens adn 20s.  Winds Tonight will run the full range of compass directions from north to east to south to west.  Wind speeds will range from 10-20 mph.

Note:  The combination of falling and blowing snow will result in near whiteout conditions at times through at least Midnight Tonight from the Brainerd Lakes area, through Grand Rapids and Bigfork, east to Hibbing and Ely, and northwest to International Falls.

Note:  Standing water from melting snow and rain will likely turn to ice by dawn Friday in Northeast-Eastcentral Minnesota as temperatures drop after Midnight.

Note:  Snowfall accumulations from Tonight’s storm will range from 6-12″ along and west-northwest of a line from Brainerd to Hibbing to Ely.  Snow accumulations will be much less for Northeast and Eastern Minnesota with generally 1-3″ expected, while locations closer to Lake Superior see little if any snow accumulation Tonight.

Friday and Friday Night:

A temporary break in the storminess will take place on Friday as Tonight’s low pulls northeast away from our local area while the next storm which gave snow and sleet to Phoenix, Arizona Today pulls into the Central Plains Friday Morning.  For Friday, expect mostly cloudy skies.  Lingering light snow and flurries should end early in the day in Northern Minnesota with little additional accumulation expected.  Patchy freezing drizzle or flurries are possible Tomorrow in Eastern Minnesota with some drizzle or fog in Northwest Wisconsin.  Highs on Friday will range from the 30s in Northwest Wisconsin with single digits from Leader to Hibbing to Ely and points west from there.  Winds Tomorrow will become north or east at 10-20 mph.

For Friday Night:  Intense upper level low will lift northeast out of Nebraska while a deep surface low moves almost due north through the Eastern half of Minnesota.  Strong lift will develop ahead of the upper low/trough which will likely cause an area of heavy snow to develop in Central-Eastern Minnesota which will then lift off to the north.  It still appears that Northwest Wisconsin, the Twin Ports and Interstate 35 corridor will get dry slotted once this band of heavy precipitation moves through.  The main axis of heavy snow with substanial accumulations appears to be setting up from Brainerd to Hibbing, including the Arrowhead of Minnesota, and west through Cass Lake, Bigfork, and International Falls.  Those locations have the potential of picking up another 6-10″ of snow Friday Night from this second storm.  2-5″ of snow is possible from the Twin Ports through the I-35 corridor, and also in Northwestern Wisconsin.  There is also a possibility for some sleet or freezing rain across Northwest Wisconsin and far Eastern Minnesota late Friday Afternoon, but at this time it doesn’t look like ice accumulations would be very significant.

Low temperatures Friday Night will be in the single digits below to above zero with gusty east winds, turning north or south late in the night.  Wind speeds of 15-30 mph will be common with higher gusts.  Near whiteout conditions will develop at times Friday Night due to the falling and blowing snow.

Note:  Additional winter weather headlines will likely be issued for the Friday Night storm.

Extended Forecast:

Low pressure exits the area to the northeast on Saturday, wrap around snow showers and flurries along with gusty winds will continue on Saturday, although any additional accumulations should be under an inch.  Temperatures on Saturday will be in the single digits below to above zero, but 20s and 30s are possible just after Midnight Tomorrow Night in Northeast Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin before the arctic air moves in.  Lows Saturday Night will be in the single digits and teens below zero.  Mainly dry conditions are expected for our local area Sunday and Sunday Night with highs in the single digits below to around 10 above zero with lows in the single digits, teens, and lower 20s below zero.

5 Day Forecast for Duluth/Superior

*WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY*
Timing:  Until 6 AM CST Friday.

.Tonight…  Rain and snow Inland from Lake Superior changing to light snow, freezing drizzle, and flurries.  Rain closer to Lake Superior changing to flurries and light freezing drizzle Overnight.  Areas of fog.  Total snow accumulations around an inch over the hill, little if any accumulation closer to Lake Superior.  Low 15 to 20, a little warmer near Lake Superior.  Wind east to northeast at 10 to 20 mph, becoming north Overnight.

.New Years Eve…  Mostly cloudy.  Patchy freezing drizzle or flurries.  High 30 to 35 early with temperatures falling to the 20s.  Wind north at 10 to 20 mph, becoming northeast during the Afternoon.

.Friday Night…  Windy with snow through Midnight with some light snow and flurries after Midnight.  Sleet or freezing rain possible early.  Total snowfall accumulations of 2-5″.  Low 5 to 10.  Wind east to northeast at 15 to 30 mph during the Evening, wind becoming south at 10 to 20 mph late.  Areas of blowing and drifting snow especially through Midnight.

.New Years Day…  Breezy and cold.  Occasional light snow and flurries.  Additional accumulations under one inch.  High 25 to 30 early with temperatures falling to the single digits.  Wind becoming northwest at 15 to 25 mph.

.Saturday Night…  Very cold.  Becoming partly cloudy.  Low 5 below to 10 below.

.Sunday…  Partly cloudy.  High 5 to 10.

.Sunday Night…  Partly cloudy.  Low 5 below to 10 below.

.Monday…  Snow showers or flurries possible.  High 10 to 15.

Normal temperatures for Tomorrow:

High:  18
Low:    0

Tim

12/30/10: UPDATED STORM INFORMATION

Issued at 5:06 PM CST, Thursday, December 30th, 2010

.All headlines issued by the National Weather Service Duluth, Minnesota.

*WINTER STORM WARNING*

Timing:

Until 6 AM CST Friday.

Counties included in the warning:

Koochiching MN…Itasca MN…Cass MN…Crow Wing MN…Northern Aitkin MN…Central and Northern St. Louis MN.

Some cities included in the warning:

International Falls MN…Littlefork MN…Bigfork MN…Togo MN…Grand Rapids MN…Cass Lake MN…Walker MN…Leader MN…Brainerd MN…Hill City MN…Cotton MN…Hibbing MN…Ely MN…and Crane Lake MN.

Discussion:

Strong low pressure was centered in Southwestern Minnesota at 4 PM CST Today, this low will track northeast and will reach Northwest Wisconsin by late Tonight.  Snow, heavy at times will continue through Midnight in Northcentral Minnesota with winds gusting to 20 mph at times.  This will cause visibilities to drop to a quarter mile or less in falling and blowing snow.  Snowfall rates around an inch per hour will occur This Evening.  Snow will continue Overnight, but should decrease in intensity and begin to taper off from southwest to northeast.

Total snowfall accumulations of 5-10″ are expected by early Friday Morning.

A winter storm warning means heavy accumulation of snow will occur.  Expect extremely slippery and dangerous snow covered roads.  If you travel, exercise extreme caution and allow extra time to reach your destination.  Let someone know your travel route and expected arrival time.  Have a working cell phone in case you become stranded.  Keep a winter survival kit in your vehicle, including a flashlight, food, and water.

*WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY*

Timing:

Until 6 AM CST Friday.

Counties included in the advisory:

Southern Aitkin MN…Carlton MN…Southern St. Louis MN…Lake MN…and Cook MN.

Some cities included in the advisory:

Aitkin MN…McGrath MN…Moose Lake MN…Cloquet MN…Duluth MN…Floodwood MN…Two Harbors MN…Silver Bay MN…Finland MN…Isabella MN…Lutsen MN…Grand Marais MN…Hovland MN…and Grand Portage MN.

Discussion:

A variety of precipitation will continue This Evening from the Interstate 35 corridor through the Twin Ports and Arrowhead of Minnesota.  Rain, sleet, freezing rain, and snow will gradually turn to snow away from Lake Superior This Evening with some light snow continuing after Midnight.  The precipitation closer to Lake Superior will fall as rain and drizzle, but some sleet and snow will likely mix in at times before precipitation changes to some light snow later in the night.

Total snowfall accumulations of 1-4″ are expected in the advisory area by late Tonight with the greatest amounts inland from Lake Superior.

Other impacts:  Temperatures in the lower to middle 30s This Evening will fall into the teens to around 20 degrees after Midnight.  Any standing water will turn to ice after Midnight.

A winter weather advisory for snow means roads, sidewalks, and other untreated exposed surfaces will become slippery and hazardous.  Snow accumulations will also make roads snow covered and icy.  Use extreme caution when walking or driving and be especially aware of bridges, overpasses, ramps, and other elevated surfaces.

Note:  A second storm is expected to hit the Northland late Friday Afternoon through Saturday Morning.  Additional winter storm warnings and advisories will likely be needed with this next event, these headlines will be issued either late Tonight or Friday Morning.  At this time it appears that the heaviest snow will fall west-northwest of the Twin Ports.

Tim

12/30/10: THURSDAY MORNING WINTER WEATHER HEADLINE STATEMENT

Issued at 7:34 AM CST, Thursday, December 30th, 2010

.All headlines issued by the National Weather Service Duluth, Minnesota.

*WINTER STORM WARNING*

Timing:

Until 6 AM CST Friday.

Counties included in the warning:

Koochiching MN…Itasca MN…Cass MN…Crow Wing MN…Northern Aitkin MN…Central and Northern St. Louis MN.

Some cities included in the warning:

International Falls MN…Littlefork MN…Bigfork MN…Togo MN…Grand Rapids MN…Cass Lake MN…Walker MN…Leader MN…Brainerd MN…Hill City MN…Hibbing MN…Cotton MN…Ely MN…and Crane Lake MN….

Discussion:

Areas of dense fog along with occasional light snow and light freezing rain will be found in Northcentral Minnesota through early This Afternoon before precipitation becomes heavier from mid-Afternoon through Tonight.  Mixed precipitation will turn to snow from northwest to southeast with heavy snowfall rates of 1″ an hour developing late This Afternoon and This Evening.  Strong low pressure responsible for this wintry weather will move from the Central Plains to near Duluth Minnesota Tonight.

Expect visibilities to drop to a quarter mile or less in areas of dense fog and mixed precipitation This Morning, and then from heavy snow This Afternoon and Tonight.  In addition to the falling snow, northerly winds will increase to 20 mph which will cause areas of blowing and drifting snow.

Total snowfall accumulations by early Friday Morning will range from 5-8″ with locally higher amounts up to 10″.  Ice accumulations of a couple hundreths of an inch are also possible Today.

Other impacts:  Temperatures which will start around 30 degrees or a little above will drop to the single digits by late Tonight. 

A winter storm warning for wintry mixed precipitation means heavy accumulation of snow, sleet, and freezing rain will occur.  Expect extremely slippery and dangerous snow and ice covered roads.  If you travel, exercise extreme caution and allow extra time to reach your destination.  Let someone know your travel route and expected arrival time.  Have a working cell phone in case you become stranded.  Keep a winter survival kit in your vehicle, including a flashlight, food, and water.

*WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY*

Timing:

Until 6 AM CST Friday.

Counties included in the advisory:

Southern Aitkin MN…Carlton MN…Southern St. Louis MN…Lake MN…and Cook MN.

Some cities included in the advisory:

Aitkin MN…McGrath MN…Moose Lake MN…Cloquet MN…Floodwood MN…Duluth MN…Two Harbors MN…Silver Bay MN…Finland MN…Isabella MN…Lutsen MN…Grand Marais MN…Hovland MN…and Grand Portage MN.

Discussion:

Expect a variety of weather Today and Tonight from the Arrowhead of Minnesota to the North Shore south through the Twin Ports and I-35 corridor, west through Aitkin.  Dense fog reducing visibilities to a quarter mile or less will continue Today along with areas of light drizzle and light freezing drizzle.  Heavier precipitation will develop This Afternoon and will continue This Evening with a mixture of rain, freezing rain, sleet, and snow expected which will gradually change over to snow from west to east Tonight before the precipitation ends later in the night.

A light coating of ice will accumulate Today especially on untreated surfaces, use extreme caution in parking lots, secondary roads, driveways, and sidewalks.

A wide range in snowfall totals of 1-5″ can be expected by the time this storm departs late Tonight.  The least amount of snow is expected along the I-35 corridor through the Twin Ports and North Shore of Lake Superior with greater totals expected from Floodwood down toward Aitkin/Lake Mille Lacs, and to the Arrowhead of Minnesota.

Other impacts:  Temperatures in the 30s Today will drop into the teens Overnight.  Any standing water will turn to ice late Tonight.

A winter weather advisory for freezing drizzle and dense fog means roads, sidewalks, and other untreated exposed surfaces will become slick and hazardous due to a light glazing of ice.  Snow accumulations will also make roads snow covered and icy.  Use extreme caution when walking or driving and be especially aware of bridges, overpasses, ramps, and other elevated surfaces.

Tim