Snowstorm Blasts Multiple States, As Cold Front Heads Toward Michigan

1-2 feet of snow expected in hard-hit areas

WWJ News
October 10, 2019 - 12:51 pm

(WWJ/AP) A powerful winter-like storm is closing schools and slowing travel in multiple states as a massive cold front makes its way toward Michigan, possibly bringing the first snow of the season to the U.P.

Winter storm warnings and watches stretch through the Great Plains, from Wyoming and Montana through western Nebraska and into the Dakotas and Minnesota. Forecasters are warning the storm is packing strong winds and double-digit snowfall totals, along with blizzard-like conditions through Friday.

Snow has been accumulating in Colorado, where some areas were on "accident alert" due to dicey road conditions. 

In South Dakota, dozens of school districts canceled classes or started late. The National Weather Service in Bismarck, North Dakota said a "potentially historic October winter storm" was in the making.

Forecasters predicted 1 foot (0.3 meter) of snow or more for parts of the Dakotas through Friday, while up to 2 feet (0.61 meters) of snow is expected in the Rocky Mountains.

In Michigan, WWJ AccuWeather Meteorologist Dave Samuel says we'll see some much cooler weather as a result of this. 

"You're probably hearing about how cold it is in Denver;  temperatures went from the 80s to the teens where they are right now. Well, that cold front's heading our way," Samuel said. "It won't bring nearly that drastic of a temperature drop, but it will turn a lot cooler this weekend." 

The big question: Could Michigan see some snow? It's not out of the question Up North. 

AccuWeather says that front and its windy showers will be moving through Lower Michigan and the Upper Peninsula Friday evening.

Along with this, rain in the western U.P. could have some snow showers mixed in. The National Weather Service in Gaylord said Thursday that while cold, wind and rain are certainly expected, the potential for mixed precipitation this weekend remains uncertain. 

Some forecasts are also calling for a few snowflakes flying in parts of Central and Northern Lower Michigan at times this weekend. 

In metro Detroit, temperatures will get up as high as 70 degrees on Friday, falling into the low-to-mid 40s as the front blows in at night.

The Detroit area is expected to get some chilly rain showers; but it will not get quite cold enough to snow. It'll remain a bit chilly on Saturday, with high temps hovering just above 50 degrees. 

MLive Meteorologist Mark Torregrossa tells WWJ the snow that will start Friday night won't stick, but it's a couple weeks earlier than normal. He says that means southeast Michigan will probably see an earlier winter as well, due to the weather conditions he's seeing to our north over Canada.

"I think winter will come earlier rather than later this year. I also believe that with the circulation we have around the globe now, we will get a major break sometime in the middle of the winter. That helps people that can’t tolerate it, it helps them out a little bit in their psyche," Torregrossa said.

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