Storm fades today; Sets records; Quiet pattern; Seesaw temps this week

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Icy spruce tips Monday at the Weather Lab

Image: Paul Huttner – MPR News

Sideswiped

There are several remarkable aspects of Minnesota’s weekend winter storm.

With 18″ snowfall totals, major freeway closures, and several weather records this storm packed plenty of punch and a few surprises.

Today in Updraft we wrap up the storm that was, and look forward to the week ahead.

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Sunday snow in the west metro

Blizzard Warnings continue through noon in western Minnesota

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18″ snowfall total reported at Audubon, MN in Becker County

9″ to 17″ snowfall totals in west central Minnesota

5″ to 12″ snowfall totals from Brianerd to Duluth

.62″ new daily precipitation record at MSP Airport for February 10th

6.7″ new Daily snowfall record for St. Cloud, MN

9.3″ New daily snowfall record at Fargo

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MNDOT Cam shows spinout accident on I-94 at Highway 280 last night.

Storm packed a punch:

Sunday’s storm came in on time and delivered some major wind, rain and snowfall to Minnesota.

The hardest hit areas are from the eastern Dakotas into west central Minnesota toward Cass County and the North Shore, where a widespread band of anywhere from 6″ to 18″ of snow came down.

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The winds with this system are impressive, especially in western Minnesota where gusts have topped 40 mph.

Check out the cool and beautiful wind map as the storm center slid south of MSP late Sunday.

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Image: hint.fm/wind/

I can’t recall seeing this many reports of blizzard conditions at one time recently in Minnesota.

PRELIMINARY LOCAL STORM REPORT

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE TWIN CITIES/CHANHASSEN MN

606 AM CST MON FEB 11 2013

0430 AM BLIZZARD ALEXANDRIA 45.87N 95.38W

02/11/2013 DOUGLAS MN LAW ENFORCEMENT

DISPATCH REPORTS LESS THAN 1/4 MILE VISIBILITY IN

OUTLYING AREAS. SOME DRIFTING ON ROADWAYS. INTERSTATE 94

CLOSED WEST OF MN 127.

0525 AM BLIZZARD MORRIS 45.59N 95.91W

02/11/2013 STEVENS MN LAW ENFORCEMENT

LIMITIED VISIBILITY IN THE TOWN OF MORRIS. TRAVEL IS NOT

ADVISED ACROSS THE COUNTY. ROADS ARE DRIFTED OVER IN

MORRIS. WIND GUST OF 40 MPH RECORDED AT MORRIS AWOS AT

452 AM.

0530 AM BLIZZARD OLIVIA 44.78N 95.00W

02/11/2013 RENVILLE MN LAW ENFORCEMENT

NEAR ZERO VISIBILITIES IN OPEN AREAS. WIND GUST OF 37 MPH

AT OLIVIA AWOS AT 450 AM.

0530 AM BLIZZARD APPLETON 45.20N 96.02W

02/11/2013 SWIFT MN LAW ENFORCEMENT

DISPATCH REPORTS NEAR ZERO VISIBILITY IN OPEN AREAS. WIND

GUST OF 43 MPH RECORDED AT APPLETON AWOS AT 1253 AM.

0530 AM BLIZZARD MONTEVIDEO 44.95N 95.72W

02/11/2013 CHIPPEWA MN LAW ENFORCEMENT

NO PLOWS OR DEPUTIES HAVE BEEN DISPATCHED. WIND GUST OF

39 MPH AT MONTEVIDEO AWOS AT 214 AM.

0536 AM BLIZZARD 1 W GRANITE FALLS 44.81N 95.56W

02/11/2013 YELLOW MEDICINE MN LAW ENFORCEMENT

NEAR ZERO VISIBILITIES AT TIMES. WIND GUST OF 38 MPH AT

GRANITE FALLS AWOS AT 351 AM.

0540 AM BLIZZARD REDWOOD FALLS 44.54N 95.11W

02/11/2013 REDWOOD MN LAW ENFORCEMENT

NO PLOWS OR DEPUTIES HAVE BEEN DISPATCHED. WIND GUST OF

39 MPH RECORDED AT REDWOOD FALLS ASOS AT 453 AM.

The overall timing & scope of the system laid out about as expected days in advance.

The Twin Cities was on the edge of heavy snow as expected.

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Snowfall ranged from 2″ to 5″ generally, a couple of inches below our MPR forecast of 3″ to 8″ and not reaching the 7″ to 12″ highlighted in the enhanced NWS Winter Storm Warning wording issued on Saturday. The back end of the system was not quite as productive as advertised last night, but the 1st wave Sunday came in with a punch.

In every weather staff I’ve worked in over the years we always laugh about how people just remember the highest number of inches put out in a forecast. There are several aspects to forecasting a storm.

Everything else can be right on…you saw the storm coming 6 days in advance and gave notice…you forecast rain, “plowable” snow, & poor driving conditions and that happens. You nailed the precip timing, wind & temps… but if you miss the ultimate snow total by an inch or two… somehow the forecast was “off?”

Nature of the beast. On to the next system.

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Seesaw temps this week:

Today’s colder winds will ease by tomorrow, as temps return to the 30s.

Our mid-week mild up lasts through Wednesday. Then the next cold front pushes in late this week, and temps will return to brisk levels this weekend.

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The good news?

The cold won’t last forever…and won’t be as frigid as what we endure two weeks ago.

There are signs that we may see a period of 30s returning again in about two weeks.

There are also signs of more wet systems coming through in the last part of February.

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NOAA's CPC agrees.

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“Potentially” good news for our rivers and lakes that can use every drop of moisture before spring.

Did I just say …spring?

PH

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