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December 29, 2010 07:43 AM

Storm Center Update - Wednesday AM

Big changes are ahead in the weather, so enjoy the nice conditions while they last.

Highs Wednesday will be in the 30s across the east, with 40s once again in western KELOLAND. Winds are stronger this morning in southeastern KELOLAND and that’s the reason for the warmer temperatures. The weather begins changing quickly Wednesday night and there are several details to track. Here is a break-down of the weather highlights heading into the New Year.

Rapid City-Black Hills:
Dropping temperatures and areas of snow will develop by midnight tonight with blowing snow likely on Thursday. Winter storm watches will go into effect late tonight. Total accumulation Thursday of 2-4” possible, but with winds of 25-50 miles per hour and falling temperatures into the teens, hazardous travel will be likely. The second storm may also track far enough west on Friday to produce more accumulating snow and bitterly cold wind chills of -20 to -30.

Pierre-Central SD:
Cold front will reach Pierre by early Thursday morning around 6 a.m. Temperatures will be dropping Thursday with areas of snow likely behind the low pressure center as it tracks across northern SD. It appears a 1-3” snowfall will be likely by evening in central South Dakota, but more than 3” will be possible in the Mobridge area. Winds will be gusty as well near 30-35 miles per hour from the north, so blowing snow could also be an issue. The second storm coming in from Nebraska on Friday morning will also produce additional snowfall, with the potential for 6+”. Stay tuned for the latest on the track on that storm as we have yet to narrow down the heaviest accumulation. Winds will be stronger at 20-35 miles per hour from the northwest on Friday and bitterly cold wind chills will be likely, down to -30 at times.

Aberdeen-Northeastern SD:
Temperatures will be dropping Thursday with areas of snow likely during the late morning and afternoon. Snowfall of 1-3” is likely by Thursday evening with falling temperatures in the teens by late afternoon and winds from the north at 20-40 miles per hour. Viewers in west-central Minnesota will also have a period of icing, mainly north of Highway 14 Thursday morning.

The second storm will arrive late Friday morning and continue through Friday evening. Heavy snow over 6”, strong northwest winds of 20-35 miles per hour, and bitterly cold wind chills will be likely on Friday. Winter storm watches are in effect from late Thursday night through Saturday morning.

Sioux Falls-Southeast:
Rain showers will develop with drizzle late Wednesday night and Thursday morning. Rainfall will be .10 to .20” through the day, with some icing still possible north of Highway 14. Temperatures will likely stay in the lower to middle 30s through Thursday early afternoon. Temperatures will start to drop by the late afternoon to around 20 by 5 p.m. Thursday.

Winter storm watches will go into effect for Friday in southeastern South Dakota as a second storm lifts north out of Nebraska Friday morning. Heavy snow, strong winds, and bitterly cold wind chills will be the problem Friday afternoon and evening. The heaviest snowfall accumulation is forecast to be west of I-29, but the final track of this storm could still change, so viewers in northwest Iowa and southwest Minnesota need to pay attention to the forecast. This watch does include Sioux Falls and means 6+” of snow will be possible. Snow and wind will diminish through the day on Saturday.

Travelers should stay tuned for the latest on this storm through the day.