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Daryl Ritchison, WDAY, Published November 21 2010

Weather Talk: ‘Worst’ blizzard often one that affects you the most

Twin Cities Public Television recently produced a show called “Minnesota’s Deadliest Blizzards.” They focused on the October 1880 blizzard made famous in Laura Ingalls Wilder’s book “The Long Winter,” the “Children’s Blizzard” of 1888 and the “Armistice Day Blizzard” of 1940.

All three of those storms did affect this area, but not to the degree that they did in areas south and east of the Red River Valley. The Upper Midwest is a breeding ground for blizzards with the main ingredients of persistent snow cover, cold temperatures, wind and moisture available to create such a storm for several months each year.

All things considered, I have always been surprised we do not see more blizzards than we do. I am often asked what is the worst blizzard ever recorded in this area. Such analysis always has some subjective points to consider, making it difficult to answer. But to me, the worst blizzard or snowstorm tends to be one that affected you the most, as that in turn tends to be the one most remembered.

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