1996: Heavy snowfall accumulations of four to eight inches occurred over much of Central Minnesota. Some of the heavier amounts included 8 inches at Montevideo and Gaylord, 7 inches at St. James, Mankato, Madison and Stewart. Six inches was reported in the Twin Cities and Glenwood.
1953: Freezing rain hits parts of Minnesota. 3 inches of ice on wires at telephone wires at Lake Benton.
Minnesota is freckled with lakes - with the exception of Superior none of them large enough, with a long enough "fetch", to spark lake-effect snows.
Yes, it could be worse. You could be stuck in Buffalo. As much as 70 inches of snow has piled up on the south side of the city. Roads are impassable, the National Guard has been called out - this is one of the biggest dumpings on record, coming unusually early.
What's going on? We're seeing more instability and volatility in the weather than ever before. On Saturday I witnessed a "5.5-Sigma event" over Alaska; a bubble of amazing warmth for mid-November. According to local science writer Greg Laden the odds of a 5.5 Sigma event, more than 5 standard deviations from the mean, is about 1 in 26 million. Incomprehensibly small. Extremes are becoming more extreme.
The odds of El Nino have risen to 70 percent; I'm still not convinced this winter will be a carbon copy of last winter. More details below.
A weekend thaw is still likely; a cold rain Sunday ending as a couple inches of snow Monday. I expect good travel weather Tuesday & Wednesday, but latest ECMWF guidance hints at more accumulating snow for Thanksgiving Day.
I picked a bad winter to sell my snowmobiles.
* Map above courtesy of mesonet.org.
* The Washington Post has some amazing time-lapse footage of snow squalls setting up over the southern suburbs of Buffalo. I can't recall ever seeing such a sharp cut-off to the heaviest snow bands.
TODAY: Partly sunny, a brittle breeze. Winds: NW 10-15. Wind chill: -8. High: 17
THURSDAY NIGHT: Clear to partly cloudy and chilly. Low: 1
FRIDAY: Cold start. Milder finish with intervals of sunshine. High: 31
SATURDAY: Peeks of sun, long overdue thaw! Better travel day. Wake-up: 21. High: 38
SUNDAY: Rain developing. Some icing possible, especially outside the metro area. Wake-up: 32. High: 42
MONDAY: Rain changes over to snow. Couple inches? Wake-up: 31. High: 33
TUESDAY: Flurries taper. Better travel conditions. Wake-up: 18. High: 23
WEDNESDAY: Clouds increase, still dry. Wake-up: 14. High: 27
THANKSGIVING DAY: Period of accumulating snow possible. Wake-up: 25. High: 28
Northern Hemisphere temperature anomalies for November 19 obtained using Climate Reanalyzer (http://cci-reanalyzer.org), Climate Change Institute, University of Maine, USA