Blizzard reports west, temps plummet today

Blizzard conditions have been reported today from the Red River Valley. The worst reports are from open areas, and on east-west oriented roads as blowing snow accumulates.

Twin Cities National Weather Service

Here’s what the State Patrol is seeing in northwest Minnesota:

Here are some  storm reports (including one rescue) from the Grand Forks, N.D., National Weather Service:

  • Kennedy [Kittson Co, MN] FIRE DEPT/RESCUE reports BLIZZARD at 4:44 AM CST — SEVERE BLIZZARD CONDITIONS AND PEOPLE WERE PULLED FROM DITCH
  • Hillsboro [Traill Co, ND] TRAINED SPOTTER reports BLIZZARD at 6:09 AM CST — EAST/WEST ROADS NEARLY IMPASSABLE AND ZERO VISIBILITY
  • Starkweather [Ramsey Co, ND] CO-OP OBSERVER reports BLIZZARD at 8:20 AM CST — ZERO VISIBILITY.
  • 2 E Dilworth [Clay Co, MN] TRAINED SPOTTERreports BLIZZARD at 8:28 AM CST — WHITEOUT CONDITIONS – ZERO VISIBLITY.

And some incoming blizzard related tweets.

MPRweather10:46am via HootSuite

RT @mndotwcentral: I-94 EB closed E of Alexandria due to jackknifed semis. Difficult driving conditions Alex, Fergus and Moorhead areas.

MPRweather10:45am via HootSuiteRT @holaMau: @MSPPIO_NW @MPRweatherAlmost exactly as it was 3 weeks ago. On almost the same area (near Dilworth).vine.co/v/h9xIrPbneQa

MPRweather10:44am via HootSuiteNDDOT, Highway Patrol closes I-94 stretch from Jamestown to Bismarck. mprne.ws/sEuMm

Here’s  the text of the blizzard warning from Grand Forks NWS.

432 AM CST THU JAN 16 2014

…BLIZZARD WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 9 PM CST THIS
EVENING…

* TIMING…BLIZZARD CONDITIONS WILL CONTINUE IN THE SOUTHERN RED RIVER VALLEY INTO THIS EVENING. EXPECT ZERO VISIBILITY AT TIMES…ESPECIALLY IN OPEN COUNTRY. CONDITIONS WILL SLOWLY

IMPROVE AFTER SUNSET.

* WINDS/VISIBILITY…NORTH WINDS WILL CONTINUE FROM 30 TO 40 MPH WITH GUSTS TO 55 MPH POSSIBLE THROUGH THIS AFTERNOON. VISIBILITIES WILL BE ZERO AT TIMES IN OPEN COUNTRY.

* SNOW ACCUMULATIONS…NEW SNOWFALL OF AROUND AN INCH OR LESS.

* OTHER IMPACTS…POTENTIALLY DAMAGING WINDS MAY CAUSE LOCALIZED POWER OUTAGES. THIS WILL BE A LIFE THREATENING BLIZZARD…TRAVEL TODAY IN OPEN COUNTRY WILL BE IMPOSSIBLE AT TIMES. MAKE PLANS TO POSTPONE OR DELAY ANY TRAVEL TODAY.

Highest winds in the west

The core of the strongest winds will rage in the eastern Dakotas and western Minnesota today. The Twin Cities will be gusty, but get off relatively easier with this system.

NOAA

No travel is recommended in eastern North Dakota and roads in northwest Minnesota have been closed.

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE GRAND FORKS ND
337 AM CST THU JAN 16 2014

…NO TRAVEL ADVISED ON I 29 AND I 94 IN NORTH DAKOTA…

…SEVERAL ROADS CLOSED IN MINNESOTA…

THE NDDOT HAS ISSUED A NO TRAVEL ADVISORY FOR I 29 FROM THE CANADIAN BORDER TO THE SOUTH DAKOTA BORDER…AND FOR I 94 FROM FARGO TO JAMESTOWN DUE TO ZERO VISIBILITY.

IN MINNESOTA…THE MN DOT HAS CLOSED US HIGHWAY 2 FROM EAST GRAND FORKS TO CROOKSTON…HIGHWAY 2 FROM CROOKSTON TO ERSKINE AND HIGHWAY 200 FROM ND STATE LINE AND US HIGHWAY 75 NEAR HALSTAD.

ZERO VISIBILITY IS OCCURRING WITH WINDS GUSTING TO 60 MPH AT TIMES.

Winds gusted as high as 63 mph in eastern North Dakota this morning.

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE GRAND FORKS ND
246 AM CST THU JAN 16 2014
…LATEST WIND REPORTS…

LOCATION SPEED TIME/DATE LAT/LON
CAVALIER AIRPORT 63 0535 AM
DONALDSON 62 0750 AM
CROOKSTON AIRPORT 62 0754 AM
SAINT VINCENT 60 0520 AM
FARGO-HECTOR INTL ARPT 60 0803 AM
GRAND FORKS AFB 60 0649 AM
GRAFTON AIRPORT 58 0755 AM
5 SE EAST GRAND FORKS 58 0750 AM
GRAND FORKS INTL ARPT 56 0705
MOORHEAD AIRPORT 56 0814 AM
HALLOCK AIRPORT 56 0533 AM

Upside down temps today

Temps actually rose overnight and reached 34 degrees in the metro as a wedge of Pacific air worked in ahead of the incoming arctic front.

Twin Cities NWS

The temp roller coaster continues with falling temps and wind chills on gusty northwest winds today and tonight.

Weatherspark

Weekend thaw

Temps moderate this weekend after a chilly Friday.

Weatherspark

Great winter weekend

This should be a great weekend to get out and enjoy all that Minnesota has to offer in winter. The fresh snow will make for great skiing and outdoor activities. My top pick? Go check out the boys and girls of winter at the U.S. Pond Hockey Championships  on Lake Nokomis in Minneapolis.

U.S. Pond Hockey

Next weekend I’ll be playing in the North American Pond Hockey Championships on Lake Minnetonka. Last Saturday I was part of a crew that out up snow fence, and the wintry “Field of Dreams” is taking shape in Excelsior. The ice surface looks excellent.

North American Pond Hockey Championships

This is also a great event with lots of live entertainment, and the early read is for a mild start and then another arctic front. The question remains just how deep the cold will be, and if the polar vortex will return again.

Here’s the latest 16-day output from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Global Forecast System. It continues to support some attention-getting cold in about 10 days.

NOAA via IPS Meteostar

Stay tuned!

  • kevins

    I can occasionally see my barn…lots of snow up in the air here.