Classic January: snow Tuesday, bitter cold later this week

Well, this is more like it.

More typical January weather has finally arrived in Minnesota. Snow waves blast parts of Minnesota Tuesday. Bitterly cold air arrives on arctic winds by Thursday.

Buckle up, folks. Things just got real in a hurry.

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Looks like the "official" National Weather Service Duluth snowfall forecast is pretty close to on track. It's snowing heavily across northeast Minnesota early Tuesday.

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I already see some impressive 4- to 8-inch snowfall totals including:

  • Hibbing [St. Louis Co, MN] PUBLIC reports SNOW of 5.50 INCH at 4:30 AM CST -- STILL SNOWING AT THE TIME OF THE OBSERVATION.

  • 2 NNW TWO Harbors [Lake Co, MN] BROADCAST MEDIA reports HEAVY SNOW of 6.20 INCH at 6:30 AM CST

  • 4 S Grand Rapids [Itasca Co, MN] PUBLIC reports HEAVY SNOW of 8.00 INCH at 5:30 AM CST -- STILL SNOWING AT THE TIME OF THE REPORT.

Twin Cities AM rush hour mess

Up to an inch of fresh snow and some light freezing rain fell in the Twin Cities overnight. That's all it takes with temperatures at 15 degrees to slick up roads for the morning rush. Spinouts and crashes dotted traffic maps. Cars produce creative tire tracks in unusual places on days like this.

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MNDOT Traffic cam at Highway 36 and Snelling Avenue.

Snow south and north 

Forecast models picked up on the southern shift of the snow zone across southern Minnesota last night. Northeast Iowa and southeast Minnesota will see more snow Tuesday. But we will see little additional accumulation in the Twin Cities.

If you are traveling south of the Twin Cities expect heavier snow and freezing drizzle. Lovely.

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Arctic front Thursday

Bitter arctic winds blow across Minnesota by Thursday morning with subzero temperature in tow. We bottom out below zero Friday and Saturday morning.

A second subzero shot arrives later next week.  Tree-popping cold. Good for the trees. Challenging for many humans. The joys of January in Minnesota.

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NOAA forecast temperatures for Minneapolis via Weather Bell.

Remember 100 degrees last May in the Twin Cities? I can't either.

Moderation in February?

There are signs of at least briefly milder temperatures as more Pacific winds in early February.

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But with the current hemispheric upper air pattern configuration, additional subzero outbreaks are quite possible next month.

Stay tuned.