Upcoming Major Winter Storm/Snowstorm - Upper Midwest

Rain to continue to impact the NW with Flood Watches in effect across parts of western Oregon and Washington State. High soil moisture content and heavy rainfall over the past couple of weeks to bring landslide/mudslide conditions to the Pacific Northwest. Heavy snowfall in the Olympic and Cascade Mountains and even into parts of the northern Rockies continue today. Our first real clipper system will be coming out of Alberta will bringing snowfall to the Upper Plains and Upper Midwest by late this week. High winds to impact parts of the Upper Plains and Midwest today with wind gusts up to 70mph possible across the region. Already beginning to see power outages across the Upper-Plains.

The shortwave trough pushing into the Pacific Northwest coast this morning will quickly push along the Canadian border today before the trailing amplifying ridge allows a reinforcing shortwave trough to dig a trough down the northern High Plains tonight. This closes into a low over the upper MS Valley Thursday where it slows to a southeast drift across the Midwest through Friday night. At the surface, low pressure developing over the upper MS River is likely to be nearly stationary Thursday night before it occludes/fills as it shifts into northern IL Friday. Ahead of the wave, a brief surge of southerly flow with frontogenesis could produce a slushy rain/snow mix, with some light freezing rain Thursday as precipitation pushes from MN/IA into WI/IL. The ice accretion risk with this is for a few hundredths of an inch. While precipitation rates are not expected to be particularly heavy, the steady precipitation and increasingly cold conditions should allow for several inches of snow to fall especially as the low becomes stationary in the Upper-Midwest. Lake Effect snow with Lake Superior enhancement looks to be mainly across southwestern portions of the lake based on the consensus low position and northeasterly low-level flow there Thursday night, backing to northerly on Friday. That northerly flow then persists into Friday night.


High Wind Watches and Warnings Continue today until 9 PM MST across the Upper-Plans. Strong winds may blow down trees and power lines. Some power outages are possible. Travel may become difficult, especially for high-profile vehicles. Power outages already reported across parts of this region.


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