Icy shot: PM/Evening Update

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Icy drops cover the MNDOT traffic camera lens this afternoon on I-35 at Chicago Ave.

PM/Evening Update:

Bands of patchy freezing drizzle will continue to slide through a corridor from Rochester through the Twin Cities through this evening.

Expect occasional freezing drizzle and light snow showers until the wave passes tonight. Treated roads should be fine, but watch out for untreated roadways and icy sidewalks. It will be icy underfoot tonight.

We should get a break from precip on Friday.

The bigger and longer range picture still looks wet for the weekend. I still see a trend for rain Saturday in the metro and much (most?) of southern Minnesota. The best chance for ice and heavy snow will be in western Minnesota and the eastern Dakotas.

The latest model runs are all over the place for Sunday. Differences in storm track, precipitations type and where a dry slot may set up still exist. Needless to say, forecast confidence for Sunday is not very high, at least not yet. Hopefully the overnight and Friday’s forecast model runs will clear up differences and provide a more cohesive solution.

Stay tuned!



Patchy bands of freezing rain wreaked havoc with commuters this morning in the metro and parts of southern Minnesota. Remnant waves from the same weather system that brought the debilitating ice storm to Iowa are spinning though today. Expect additional occasional bands of freezing rain to move through today.

-Twin Cities radar loop

-MNDOT Traffic Cams

Freezing rain advisories are out for parts of southeastern Minnesota today.

The icy coating is the first in a series of weather systems that will affect the region over the next 72 hours. The main event is still on track for this weekend. The latest model runs are indicating widespread differences in outcomes, but there are some trends emerging for the weekend system.

-The track of the main upper and surface low pressure system are trending further west. This means that the chances for warm, above freezing, air moving into Minnesota is increasing. This will likely mean that much of the state will see precip transition to just plain rain instead of freezing rain or snow Saturday.


-Some models are suggesting we could reach 38 degrees in the metro Saturday.

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-It appears a “dry slot” will wrap into the system. After the initial wave or rainfall, this may reduce precipitation amounts later Saturday until additional moisture wraps in behind the system on Sunday and Monday.

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-It appears the heaviest band of snow with the system will be in the eastern Dakotas and western Minnesota. Sub-freezing air in these areas should produce mostly snow. Western MN, (around Ortonville, Canby to Redwood Falls) and the eastern Dakotas could see snowfall totals approaching a deep foot. The Twin Cities may see mostly rain with this system. If that works out, and it’s still early enough for major changes to this forecast, totals may end up somwhere in the 2″ to 4″ range across the metro.

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The best timing for snow appears to be from Sunday evening into Monday morning for the metro. Monday’s AM rush could be snow covered and slippery. Oh Joy!

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There are still major differences in precip type, amounts and timing with the weekend system. Stay tuned for changes and updates, and watch the icy spots today!


  • What’s the deal with the NAM? It’s hundreds of miles south of the other models and has the storm going mostly east instead of northeast. I’m not holding out much hope for snow (I like snow) but it would be a whole different ballgame if it verified—it’s had better run-to-run continuity than the GFS. (For instance, for the forecast valid at 12Z Sunday the NAM has the low centered near Harlan Iowa, near the Iowa-Neb.-Mo. border, and near Osceola, Ia., the GFS has the low centered near Mankato, elongated from Redwood Falls to La Crosse and east of the Quad Cities.)

    In any case, what are your thoughts on the models’ handling of this storm?