Forecast Text



January 23, 2017


  • After a 8-9 days of gloom and doom, repairs are on the way.
  • Most areas of the N. Midwest should be able to support snow play by the weekend
  • Extended period into the first week of Feb sees no more thaws.


After over a week of melting and sadness among snow lovers in the Midwest, changes will arrive this week to do some damage repair. Things may not get back to exactly the shape they were in before the thaw hit, but most of the Northwoods and perhaps even areas south of the Northwoods could have suitable conditions for snow-play this weekend…if not sooner.

Things will be fairly quiet across the region during the day today. Some snows are already starting to break out across western NE and SD and this will be the area to watch the snows blossom more as we go through the day today and into the overnight hours.

That area of snows will then work to the east-northeast and through the Midwest tomorrow and Wednesday. The models are pretty good agreement on the strength of the low and thus the general amounts it will produce. It looks like within the main band of snow, totals of around 3-7″ will fall. More would be likely, but the snow will likely be quite dense and high in moisture content. An area of 1-4″ snows will fall to the north of the main band and it looks like some light rains will change to light snow, with accumulations of an inch or less to the south of the main snow band.

As for where the main band will fall, it looks to be in the vicinity of southern MN, northern IA, central WI and central-northern lower MI. One idea is a bit south of that and the other a bit north.

The system snows with this event will slowly draw to a close later Wednesday into Thursday.

Temps will be remaining above average through the period, but will be cooling. Most of the region will run above freezing for highs today and tomorrow and then the freeze line will be working its way through the northern 1/2 of the region for Wednesday and Thursday.


As we work through the weekend and first half of next week, temps will continue to cool and the freeze line looks to get shoved into the southern Midwest, with highs in the Northwoods running in the teens and 20’s, with 20’s for highs in the rest of MN, WI, MI and northern sections of IL, IN and OH.

As far as any new snow goes, it looks like a large ridge will sit across the western US and the flow in the Midwest will be in from the NW. This is not a good pattern for big system snows to fall in the region, but is a good pattern for average to below average temps and some clipper type systems. One clipper is seen for the weekend, with another by around Tuesday of next week. Each looks to bring far NE MN, all of the UP, north central and northeast WI as well as most of lower MI and far northern IN/OH a general 1-3″ of snow.

In addition to the snows with the clipper systems, the atmosphere will become productive for LES in the UP by Thursday and into the rest of the LES belts of the Great Lakes by Friday and then remain favorable through the weekend and first half of next week. It is still too far out to be trying to nail down exact amounts with that LES activity, but a general 10-15″ is a good chance in the UP snow belts, with some areas possibly seeing more. LES totals in western lower MI would likely run in the 5-10″ range.


The forecast for this time frame still sees the upper air flow out of the NW, which would bring average to slightly below average temps to the Midwest, with some light clipper snows in the Great Lakes region and some moderate LES.

Click here for John Dee’s 2016-17 Seasonal Outlook