‘Large and potent’ winter storm headed for Minnesota

From MPR News weather editor Steve Nelson:

Our early March storm appears to be on track to dump a healthy amount of snow on parts of the state. Much of North Dakota and parts of northwestern Minnesota, including the Fargo Moorhead area, are under a winter storm warning that starts at 6 p.m. tonight. In addition, the winter storm watch has been expanded to include a bigger chunk of Minnesota, and the Arrowhead region is covered by a less extreme hazardous weather outlook.

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The National Weather Service in Grand Forks calls this a “large and potent storm.” It’s also a slow moving system. In the northwestern portion of the state, the snow should start tonight and continue through late Monday or early Tuesday. From the NWS:

STORM TOTALS OF 8 TO 12 INCHES ARE FORECAST ACROSS THE WARNING AREA…WITH LOCALIZED HIGHER AMOUNTS POSSIBLE DUE TO STRONGER BANDS OF PERSISTENT SNOWFALL. AT THIS TIME THE AXIS OF HEAVIEST SNOWFALL IS EXPECTED FROM THE CANDO AND DEVILS LAKE AREA TO GRAND FORKS…MAYVILLE AND FARGO/MOORHEAD TOWARDS WAHPETON AND FERGUS FALLS. AS THE STORM DEVELOPS A BETTER REFINEMENT OF WHERE THE HEAVIEST SNOW WILL BE POSSIBLE.

That uncertainty is making it a bit difficult to say just how much snow the Twin Cities will get. It’s still unclear exactly what track the low pressure system will take as it moves to the south. In the metro, expect to see snow develop late tonight and continue through Tuesday. Six inches or more are possible in some areas that are covered by the watch. It could be a messy commute on Monday.

  • Steve

    Strangely you never, I repeat never give good forecasts for outstate Minnesota, I live in Grand Rapids and listen a lot. My general observation is that for anywhere but the METRO area the forecast sucks.

  • Gordon near Two Harbors

    I agree, Steve. It’s like the rest of the state doesn’t exist. Why not call it Twin Cities Public radio?

  • hsl

    I agree with both of the comments noted above. I really like the meteorologists at MPR but it seems like they are more and more focused on only the immediate Twin Cities area. In fact, I declined to increase my sustaining membership in the most recent membership drive in large part because of the way that overall coverage seems to be skewing more and more to a smaller and smaller part of what is supposed to be a statewide network.

  • Mark

    I agree wholeheartedly with all three comments above.

  • TJC

    While I agree that it is MINNESOTA Public Radio, you can’t think that they will spend an equal amount of time on the less populated areas of the state. I don’t believe that they are intending to sleight anyone outside of the Metro area, it is just a matter of population affected. However, I also think that they are rather charmed and enamored by the outlying areas and do, in fact, spend a good deal of time talking about those place affected outside the metro.