April Blizzard Will Be One to Remember

Potential Winter Storm For SE Wyoming Wednesday

Blizzard conditions are possible.

It may be April, but for some 200 million people the upper Midwest and Plains, it will feel more like the dead of winter when a massive, potentially "historic" snowstorm arrives this week.

Large hail, damaging winds and perhaps a tornado are likely with some of the storms. Severe thunderstorms and flooding will also be risks from this storm.

While the storm intensifies slowly, it is expected to gain strength rapidly Wednesday morning and could set a record low for pressure in April. Some isolated areas of South Dakota, Nebraska, Minnesota and Wisconsin could see as many as 20 inches.

Frontier and United airlines will allow passengers scheduled to travel Wednesday or Thursday within the Plains area to change their tickets at no charge. However, the snow was already blowing and visibility low Wednesday.

Snow is expected to begin in the Duluth area by about 7 a.m. Thursday, Weather Service meteorologist Justin Schultz said.

Greg Carbin, forecast branch chief for the National Weather Service's Weather Storm Prediction Center, said that while rare, repeat patterns for severe weather are known to occur.

Winter Storm Wesley may be the second "bomb cyclone" type storm to hit the midwest in a month, weather watchers warn.

"Red Flag Warnings are widespread throughout these areas".

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Winds in excess of 50 miles per hour (80.46 kph) were combining with low humidity and an unstable atmosphere to create critical fire conditions in the three states.

The Texas Panhandle and Amarillo are close to ground zero for wind. Wednesday afternoon through Friday will be about 40 to 50 degrees colder than the temperatures Tuesday afternoon.

Any fires that develop will likely spread rapidly and will be hard to control. The southern half of Crow Wing County sits in the path of the storm where 12-plus inches is expected and the northern half and most of Cass County sits in the path where 8-10 inches is expected.

"Hopefully this time it will be a slow snowmelt", Roth said. A focus may be IL and IN, where a line of storms is likely to threaten damaging gusts.

"A swath of 1 to 2 feet of snow is forecast for the Central/Northern Plains and into Western Minnesota through Thursday evening, with locally higher amounts", the NWS said. Some spots could get 2 to 3 inches.

Minneapolis, a major Delta hub, will be impacted by this snow, so there will likely be system-wide air delays due to this.

The weather service reported the flood warning continues along the Mississippi River at Aitkin and Fort Ripley.

Thursday remains cool and unsettled, highs in the 40s for Denver, with sunny skies but chilly temperatures wrapping up the week on Friday with highs again in the 40s and 50s for the greater Denver area.

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