Cold Friday, then areas of heavy snow Saturday

Southern Minnesota could see up to 8 inches of snow

snowy day in saint paul
A woman stops to clear the snow off the windshield of her car during a snowstorm in St. Paul in October. A storm is expected to bring over 6 inches of snow to portions of the state over the weekend.
Kathryn Styer Martinez | MPR News 2020

Following cold weather Friday, temperatures turn more seasonable over the weekend, but that shift comes along with a snowstorm expected to bring over 6 inches of snow to portions of the state.

Friday’s cold

The cold air that moved in behind Thursday’s cold front continued to drop temperatures overnight, putting much of the state below zero Friday morning. 

For most of the state Friday was the coldest morning of month, which is more of a testament to how mild this month has been versus it being exceptional cold for this time of year.

For example, International Falls, which dipped to minus 9 has an average low currently of minus 7 degrees, so this morning was very close to average. But since January has been so mild, it has only has three other January days with readings below zero; the previous coldest temperature was minus 7.

Here were the temperatures at 7 a.m., when much of the state was at its coldest:

weather graphic
7 a.m. Friday temperatures
National Weather Service

Daytime highs also remain below average, although most of the state will make it at least into double-digit highs. For portions of southeastern Minnesota, those highs could also be the coldest of January. 

weather graphic
Friday high temperatures
National Weather Service

The coldest high the Twin Cities has seen this month was 18 on Jan. 9, and Friday’s temperatures are likely to stay colder than that.

Despite the cold, there will be noticeably less wind than Thursday, plus more sunshine to help take the edge off the cold.

Snowstorm hits Saturday

A winter storm that tracks south of Minnesota over the weekend is expected to bring snow across the entire state. 

weather graphic
Forecast storm location Saturday night
Tropical Tidbits

The current timing has snow moving into southwest Minnesota Saturday morning, then spreading east and north across most of the state by afternoon.

For the Twin Cities, snow is expected to start midday. Then it clears out of the state west to east overnight Saturday, clearing Minnesota by Sunday morning.

Because the center of the storm stays south of Minnesota, the heavier snow is forecast south, with less snow as you head north. It currently looks like this could average 3 to 6 inches for the southern edge of the state, then diminishing to only 1 or 2 inches or less in northern Minnesota.

A few isolated spots in southern Minnesota could get up to 8 inches of snow. 

weather graphic
Snowfall forecast through Sunday morning
National Weather Service

The areas expecting the highest snow totals are already under a winter storm watch effective Saturday morning, with the south corner of the state under a winter weather advisory. 

These are the watches and advisories issued as of 9 a.m. Friday, but more will likely be issued or upgraded as the storm approaches:

weather graphic
Watches and advisories issued as of 9 a.m. Friday
National Weather Service

High winds are not expected with this storm, which means blowing snow is unlikely to cause major problems.


The weekend storm also brings in slightly milder air, putting more of our highs over the weekend back in the teens and low 20s.

Colder air returns Monday behind the storm, with highs in the single-digits north and teens south. 

weather graphic
Twin Cities forecast through Monday
National Weather Service

Then temperatures become seasonable again, with teens north and 20s south. The end of week turns even milder, with a few 30s possible.

Programming note

You can hear my live weather updates on Minnesota Public Radio at 7:48 a.m. Monday through Friday morning.

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