ALBERTA CLIPPER: Quick-moving storm to bring snow, wind, Arctic cold later today

WDAY's StormTRACKER meteorologists are tracking the storm; check back for updates.

Winter Alerts
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FARGO — Updated Thursday, January 26, 1:30p.m.: Snow is moving into the Devils Lake basin early this afternoon and the southwest wind is beginning to pick up ahead of the main snow expected late this afternoon through the evening. The wind will become even stronger overnight as they turn from the northwest behind the snow when gusts could be in the 50-60mph range. Winds of this intensity will create blowing snow, dropping visibility to white-out conditions, especially in the open country.

The National Weather Service has upgraded the central and northern Red River Valley to a BLIZZARD WARNING beginning at midnight, lasting through noon on Friday.

Diminishing winds are expected on Friday but temperatures will also be decreasing as the arctic air spills into our region. High temperatures over the weekend will be below zero.

snow moving in.JPG

Updated Thursday, January 26, 9:45 a.m.: The front is marching closer to us this morning, but it is still calm
with temperatures slowly warming up from the morning lows in the single digits. A south breeze is still expected to pick up later on today, 15-30 mph, gusting up to 35 mph that will continue to bring in warmer air. The snow is still expected by late this afternoon-evening, accumulating 1-3". Temperatures will then rise to the 30s by midnight before they will come crashing down with the cold front in the early morning hours of Friday. The NW wind will be very strong, 20-35 mph — gusting up to 50 mph, which will cause the fresh snow to blow and drift Friday morning. The wind will slowly calm down through the day Friday, with temperatures falling all day.



Updated Thursday, January 26, 5:30 a.m.: Conditions are calm this morning as we await today's Alberta Clipper. A Winter Weather Advisory will go into effect at 3:00pm and last until noon on Friday. One to three inches of snow will quickly scoop through the area west to east this afternoon and evening. A little mixed precip will be possible across North Dakota as temps rise into the 30s. It's a short-lived warm up though; an arctic front will follow and crash the temps into the single digits by Friday afternoon as well as pick up the wind. Expect blowing snow to create near whiteout conditions (especially in open country) late tonight into at least the first half of Friday. The wind will slowly relax Friday afternoon and bring blowing snow to a stop. Subzero weather settles in Saturday.

Updated Wednesday, January 25, 7:00 p.m.: It appears travel will be impacted the most Thursday late afternoon into the evening when most of the snow will fall. During this snow, the wind is expected to be strong out of the south, causing poor visibility. There will then be a lull in the storm overnight as the temperature warms into the 30s. With the Arctic front late Friday night, temperatures will crash and there will be blowing snow in open areas.

Clipper snapshot Thursday evening.PNG
StormTRACKER Weather

ORIGINAL POST: A storm system will sweep in from the northwest late Thursday and Friday, Jan. 26-27, bringing rapidly changing weather conditions and difficult travel.

This Alberta Clipper will begin to impact the area with a strong south wind Thursday. Snow is expected to reach the Red River Valley region late Thursday afternoon into Thursday evening.

A quick one to three inches of snow is expected, enough to create poor visibility in the strong wind. The steady snow will become intermittent and light during the night.

Clipper Late Thursday.PNG
StormTRACKER Weather

The wind will switch to westerly during the night, and temperatures will warm into the lower 30s briefly, before an Arctic front arrives early Friday between midnight and dawn. A strong northwest wind will follow the front, delivering falling temperatures and blowing snow throughout the day Friday.

Travel will be impacted. There will be periods of poor visibility, drifting snow and icy roads Thursday evening through Friday. The temperature will fall below zero by Friday evening and this cold wave is likely to last more than a week, with mostly subzero temperatures and occasional dangerous wind chills.

The StormTRACKER team will update this article several times a day through Friday, so check back often for the most recent information.

John Wheeler is Chief Meteorologist for WDAY, a position he has had since May of 1985. Wheeler grew up in the South, in Louisiana and Alabama, and cites his family's move to the Midwest as important to developing his fascination with weather and climate. Wheeler lived in Wisconsin and Iowa as a teenager. He attended Iowa State University and achieved a B.S. degree in Meteorology in 1984. Wheeler worked about a year at WOI-TV in central Iowa before moving to Fargo and WDAY..
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