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    Weekend Snowstorm for the Midwest

    By By Alex Sosnowski, Expert Senior Meteorologist
    December 03, 2010, 2:33:32 AM EST

    A snowstorm spreading from the Dakotas to the Ohio Valley will precede a blast of arctic air with staying power.

    While backwash from the big eastern U.S. rainstorm managed to cause the first snowfall of the season for part of the Midwest, a storm similar to an Alberta clipper will spread light to moderate snow from the northern Plains to the Ohio Valley this weekend.

    Plunging temperatures in the wake of the storm will turn untreated wet and slushy areas to ice.

    Several inches of snow will fall from part of North Dakota Friday to northern Illinois during Saturday.

    Cities currently in the path of the potentially plowable snowstorm include Bismarck, Fargo, Aberdeen, Minneapolis, La Crosse and Cedar Rapids.

    However, even with this projected path, Duluth, Green Bay and Chicago could get enough snow to make roads slippery.


    400x266_12011601_finland

    This photo taken by AccuWeather.com Facebook fan Ron G. in Finland, on Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2010, resembles what portions of the Midwest will look like this weekend. Much of northern and western Europe is being slammed by snow and cold this week.

    While the storm will weaken upon traveling farther east and south, it may bring enough snow to coat roads and make for slippery travel into portions of Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky.

    The exact track of the storm will determine who gets the "lollipop" as far as snowfall is concerned. A jog farther north or south would shift the steady, moderate snow area.


    400x266_12011606_plainsmidwestsnowstorm


    However, at this time, it does appear the storm will track a bit farther south than suspected earlier this week, perhaps sparing Detroit and Cleveland from an accumulation.

    At present, it appears Omaha, Kansas City, St. Louis and Nashville would slide underneath the snow and end up on the milder side of the storm. Even so, the situation still bears watching.

    No doubt some snow would survive the trip into the central Appalachians, and a mixture of rain and wet snow could even reach part of the mid-Atlantic coast by Sunday.

    The overall weather pattern bears watching as progressively colder weather will continue to invade from the northern Plains to much of the East over the next couple of weeks.

    People downwind of the Great Lakes will need their snow shovels even if they miss the weekend storm, as lake-effect snow aims to drop totals in feet on the traditional areas.

    Potential Chicago Lake-Effect

    A northeast flow in the wake of the storm could set up a band of heavy lake-effect snow in the Chicago and Milwaukee area Saturday afternoon and night.

    So even though these areas may miss the "sweet spot" of the storm, shovels and plows may be busy anyway trying to clear 6 inches of the white stuff.

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