Twin Cities, greater Minnesota bracing for wintry weather

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The Twin Cities and greater Minnesota are bracing for wintry weather that is expected to hit Wednesday night and last into Thursday and Friday. 

A big storm is now entering the upper Midwest with plenty of moisture and seasonably warm air. The added moisture and “heat” will give at least half of the viewing area, including the metro, precipitation-type issues from moving from snow to rain.

A Winter Weather Advisory has been issued for the Twin Cities metro for Wednesday night and early Thursday, while a Winter Storm Warning has been issued for northern and parts of western Minnesota. 

Snow will start to fly in western Minnesota Wednesday afternoon and push eastward and northeastward over time. The snow will make it to the metro after sunset, likely after most, if not all, of the evening rush.

A quick and potentially heavy burst of snow will drop a couple to a few inches of snow on metro area roads Wednesday evening and overnight, which is what prompted the Winter Weather Advisory. However, it will be short-lived, as the snow will transition to rain from south to north overnight.

The rain will potentially reach as far north as St. Cloud and Hinckley before dancing around north of the metro through Thursday afternoon. Colder air will start to arrive Thursday evening and will gradually switch whatever precipitation is leftover to snow before quickly winding down early Friday morning.

For metro spots, it will be a quick two or three inches of snow followed by a lot of rain which will likely melt any snow that actually falls. While temperatures will be above freezing and rain will be falling, the ground remains frozen with none of this moisture getting soaked in, so ponding of water on roads and low spots is likely along with the scattered slick spots.

By Thursday night, however, temperatures will start to fall and all rain that fell through the day will freeze which could lead to some treacherous travel for at least the first part of Friday.

North and west of the metro, snow will be heavy at times, which could make travel near impossible at some points during the day Thursday and early Friday. Those could end up with over a foot of fresh snow.