Sunday spring storm is underway

The anticipated mid-April storm with messy precipitation is here, although it is moving a bit slower than originally forecast.

The Twin Cities area got a dusting of light snow overnight. This morning light snow is falling across central Minnesota, while mixed precipitation is falling in the south and heading northeast toward the metro area and Wisconsin. Rochester has been reporting freezing rain.

The short version is that temperatures will soon rise above freezing across southern Minnesota including the Twin Cities and allow the precipitation to fall as mostly rain. The latest models continue to forecast about a half inch of rain for the Twin Cities this afternoon and evening. Central to northern Minnesota will get mainly snow as snow bands work their way northward and continue tonight.

Currently, a Winter Storm Warning is in effect for northern, central and west central Minnesota. In addition, an Ice Storm Warning remains posted for Traverse and Big Stone counties (Wheaton and Ortonville area) into the afternoon. Winter Weather Advisories are in effect for much of the rest of Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin.

The big picture from the NWS shows the various warnings and advisories as they change during the day. Scroll to the bottom of the image to see the color codes.

Here is the way it looks for the metro area and much of central and southern Minnesota today:

MPX April 14 map.png

Credit:NWS Chanhassen

Northern Minnesota should remain cold enough to have mostly snow. As shown, 5 to 8 inches of snow should be expected in the northeast.

DLH April 14 map.png

Credit:NWS Duluth

The heaviest snowfalls and the strongest winds will hit northwestern Minnesota. Snowfall amounts will be difficult to measure because of the wind, but 8 to 14 inches could fall by Monday morning. With winds expected to exceed 35 mph in open areas, blizzard conditions are likely (blizzard conditions require winds of at least 35 mph and falling or blowing snow reducing the visibility to a quarter mile or less). By this evening the most difficult driving conditions will be along the Minnesota-North Dakota border and into North Dakota.

GFK April 14 map.png

Credit:NWS Grand Forks

MNDOT has a great web page for road conditions.

And more snow and rain are likely on Wednesday.

Bill Endersen

  • Chad

    Are we looking to set some sort of record for the coldest, most overcast, miserable April in recent memory? Or maybe I’m like many other people and just tending to forget that this is to be expected for April? I’m also wondering if this cold, snowy snap has anything to do with the weather/pressure system (sorry, don’t know the right weather language to use) that was hanging out around Greenland and keeping things cold for a us a few weeks ago?

    Thanks, great blog!