It’s hard to believe that a snowstorm can occur this early in the season. Especially when daytime temperatures reached the 60s, 70s, to near 80 degrees!
But looking ahead to the forecast, the cold, more seasonal weather will return and we once again have snow in the forecast for western KELOLAND. But this time five years ago, folks in western South Dakota were preparing for a blizzard.
A surface low pressure pushed up through central Nebraska and east South Dakota. This put western South Dakota and the Black Hills in a prime spot for strong winds, cold rain, and eventually, a heavy wet snow.
Wind speeds reached 50 to 70 mph in the plains which created large snow drifts that were as big as cars and trucks. Trees broke under the weight of the snow and strong winds. Snowfall amounts were measured in feet for some areas in the northern Black Hills. Bear Ridge and Lead had over 50 inches of snow over the three day event!
And ranchers in the west were still in summer mode so a lot of their cattle were still far away from their shelters so they were unprotected from the snow and wind. The storm cost ranchers millions of dollars in the loss of cattle.
So don’t let today’s weather fool you, we are transitioning to a time when strong blizzards are possible. So as we get closer to winter, stay plugged into the forecast so you aren’t caught off guard.