1. The storm coming out of Colorado will certainly be a blizzard across the Plains and Midwest. I think Iowa is the area to watch for the initial round of heavy snows. That's where the thunderstorms will run north into the cold air and create snow rates of 1-2 inches per hour.
2. The heavy snow will start in Kansas and Nebraska this afternoon and run northeast.
3. Wraparound snow will get into Milwaukee and Chicago later Thursday causing icy roads. High winds around the storm will be gusting over 40 mph across the western Great Lakes and Midwest. Chicago should get several inches of snow in the backlash of the storm. It may even look like a blizzard for a time in Chicago and Milwaukee Thursday night.
4. Lake-effect snows will be heavy. Combine the high winds, we will see lake blizzards in the tradition northwest flow locations in Michigan, Ohio, northwestern Indiana and western New York and northwestern Pennsylvania. Amounts could get over 2 feet.
5. Next week, another storm is on the weather maps and could be a big producer of severe weather as well as snow.
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The band of snow and ice that develops this weekend will be bad in Kansas but more of a nuisance through the Ohio Valley.
As milder weather moves north, it will mean snow will hit the Great Lakes and Northeast today into tonight. California will get more heavy rain.