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Helmut Schmidt, Published November 30 2013

Storm system to hit region starting Sunday

FARGO – It looks like winter is about done with teasing the Fargo-Moorhead area.

Three rounds of snow are forecast for eastern North Dakota and western Minnesota over the next few days, followed by a cold front that will usher in a shot of bitter arctic cold by the end of the week with highs below zero, WDAY meteorologist Aaron White said Saturday.

The first round of snow will bring an inch or less of snow to much of the area Sunday, White said.

The second round of snow will move through the area Sunday night into Monday afternoon, bringing another few inches of snow in a couple of separate shots of precipitation, White said.

The third round of snow – starting Tuesday and continuing into Wednesday – is shaping up to be the biggest, with periods of moderate to heavy snowfall possible.

White said that third round could mean 3 to 6 inches of snow for the F-M area, but some areas could see as much as 8 to 10 inches of snow, depending on where the heaviest bands of snowfall linger.

“It’s still a little hard to say,” White said.

The National Weather Service said the last round of snow will be paired with a breezy northwest wind that could cause blowing and drifting snow and hazardous road conditions.

Close behind the snow will be an arctic air mass bringing dangerously low temperatures and wind chills, White said.

High temperatures through Tuesday will be in the low 30s, with lows overnight in the 20s, the NWS said.

Wednesday’s high is expected to be about 23 degrees. But Thursday, the mercury will start to plummet, with a high around 5 degrees and an overnight low of minus 12, White said.

On Friday and Saturday, the highs are forecast to be in the single digits below zero, with lows in the double digits below zero, White said.

Temperatures at the end of the week will depend on the snow depth, White said. A small amount of snow will mean warmer temps, but significant snowfall could mean highs in the 10 below zero range.

The metro area has had just three-tenths of an inch of snow in November, a month where the typical snowfall accumulation is 7.9 inches, White said.

“We’re behind the normal snowfall, but the next few days will put us up where we should be,” he said.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Helmut Schmidt at (701) 241-5583