700 feet separates a dusting and a foot of snow in southeast Minnesota

While much of the Twin Cities metro received some minor coatings on grassy surfaces, it has been a much different story in areas just to our south and east. 

Widespread snow decorated parts of far southeast Minnesota and much of Wisconsin on Tuesday night and early Wednesday, leading to a foot of fresh snow in some cases. But not all spots were created equal. Elevation ended up playing a huge factor in just how much stuck.

In areas around La Crosse, just a few hundred feet separated huge amounts of snow. In the city itself, which is in the valley and sitting next to the Mississippi River, many areas just picked up some minor coatings. But in the Bluffs hanging above the city, some areas received a LOT more.

The post above is from the National Weather Service office in La Crosse, which sits in the bluffs just above the city, where more than a foot of snow fell. Meanwhile, a look in the valley below shows a much different picture, with a dusting on some of the grass.

Still image of MnDOT traffic camera in southbound Highway 61 at Interstate 90 near La Crosse.  (Supplied)

It was similar in other areas of southeastern Minnesota, with low-lying spots receiving far less snow than some of the hills around them. Here's a link to additional snow totals in the area over the last 24 hours. Keep in mind that the snow melts quickly this time of year, so the snow totals don't necessarily reflect what is currently on the ground. 

This drastic difference in snow accumulation can happen this time of year because slightly cooler air sits above the warmth emanating from the unfrozen ground. However, this is the most dramatic case of this phenomenon I've ever seen in southeast Minnesota and southwest Wisconsin.

The snow showers will stick around these areas through this evening, although any additional accumulation will be very minor. Any snow accumulation for the Twin Cities is over, however an additional flurry or two can't be ruled out into early Thursday.