Monday's icy storm in northern Minnesota reminds us just how crazy things get when glaze ice accumulates on roads.
The storm system dropped heavy snow as expected along parts of Minnesota's North Shore. But warm air surging father north than many models anticipated changes potential snow to freezing rain around Duluth. That reduced snowfall totals there but made for an icy mess. Farther north, nearly a foot of heavy wet snow fell from Silver Bay to Grand Marais and Grand Portage.
Here's an updated list of snowfall totals from the Duluth National Weather Service.
Tuesday morning clipper
A minor follow-on clipper slides through southern Minnesota early Tuesday. The system is trending further south with time on the forecast models. The heaviest snowfall of up to an inch appears to center on the Minnesota River Valley.
We may see a light glaze and dusting of snow in the Twin Cities in the pre-dawn hours Tuesday, just enough to keep us on our toes for potential slick spots on the roads Tuesday morning.
Gusty winds and colder air ride in behind Tuesday's clipper. Wind advisories are flying for much of Minnesota and the Red River Valley Tuesday. Gusts to 50 mph will get your attention.
Here's the scenario from the Red River Valley National Weather Service office in Grand Forks, N.D.
48 hour cold snap
Our cold fronts feel more like average fronts this winter. Another 48-hour cold snap arrives Wednesday. Temperatures rebound (well) above average again by the weekend and into next week.
Mild winter virtually assured
We reach the halfway point of meteorological winter next week. December was 6 to 9 degrees milder than average in Minnesota. January is running 10 degrees warmer than average so far in the Twin Cities.
With temperatures 10 to 15 degrees above average again next week, that will mean most of Minnesota will be 6 to 10 degrees warmer than average at the halfway point of winter next week.
It would take the Mother of All Februarys to make Minnesota colder than average this winter. I just don't see that happening. The predictions of another climate change driven, El Niño-enhanced mild winter are panning out.
Winter in Minnesota is 6 degrees warmer than average compared to 1970.
Winters in Minnesota are warming at the rate of 10-degrees every hundred years. Climate change is exerting strong forcing on Minnesota winters.