Shifty: Storm misses metro to the east; Snowy travel I-94 east!

Fire up the snow blowers in La Crosse. You may be able to ignore your shovel in the Twin Cities a little while longer.

The overnight model runs continue the trend of shifting the low track and snow band to the east. All major models now agree that any accumulating snowfall will miss the Twin Cities to the east. Some wet snow is still likely in Rochester &, Eau Claire, with the heavier bands favoring La Crosse and Tomah to the east.

Latest La Crosse radar loop

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Meteogram for La Crosse, WI. Overnight models dropped snowfall totals by about 2″ to 4″

Here’s what I now expect for snowfall totals with the season’s first winter storm:

Twin Cities 0″

Eau Claire & Rochester 2″ to 5″

La Crosse & Tomah: 3″ to 6″+

If you are in those areas, or are planning travel east in I-94 toward Madison expect accumulating snow and slick roads later tonight and Wednesday! Winter Storm Watches remain in effect for these areas!

According to the storm’s eastward shift, Twin Cities NWS has downgraded the western ties of counties (St. Croix. Pierce Goodhue, Steele etc.) from a winter storm watch to a winter weather advisory.

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The 0Z (evening) model runs are in, and the trend on the season’s first significant winter storm is clear.

The storm track appears to be shifting back slightly east. The trend diminishes light snow chances in the Twin Cities, and shifts the heavy snow band slightly east.

Latest Track:

The latest tracks for the NAM and GFS model runs appear to take the surface low to neat Milwaukee by 9 am Wednesday.

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Climatologically speaking that track is a little too far east for heavy snow in the metro. This is also a compact system, and will feature a sharp precip cutoff on the western edge.

The latest thinking from the weather lab is that the metro may escape with a near miss, and little or no rain or snow from this system. As you head east though, rain and snow will rapidly increase! Keep this in mind if you are planning travel east into southeast Minnesota and Wisconsin Tuesday & Wednesday.

Snowfal Totals:

The latest models suggest that the heavy snow band should set up along a line from near Mason City and Decorah, IA to near Winona and La Crosse, to near Eau Claire and Black River Falls, WI.

Anywhere from 4″ to 8″+ could fall along and near this line. There could be some isolated higher totals, but melting on warm ground will probably chew up the first 2 inches or so.

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NAM model cranks out 10″ for La Crosse! Some of that will melt on contact with warm ground.

Rochester, Red Wing and Menomonie look to be on the western edge of heavier snowfall. A good 2″ to 4″+ could fall in these areas.


If the NAM and GFS verify, the rapid cutoff on the systems western edge would mean little or no snowfall west of a Mankato to Twin Cities line.

Stay tuned as we fine tune the forecast Tuesday!


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