UPDATE 5:15 P.M.—Here is the latest from the National Weather Service about this weekend's snow potential:
...SOME SNOW TAPERING OFF THIS EVENING...THEN A LARGER WINTER STORM EXPECTED SATURDAY NIGHT INTO SUNDAY EVENING... .THE FIRST OF TWO SYSTEMS IS CURRENTLY PRODUCING LIGHT SNOW ACROSS MOST OF SOUTHERN MINNESOTA. THE SNOW WILL TAPER OFF THIS EVENING WITH ACCUMULATIONS OF GENERALLY AN INCH OR TWO. IT APPEARS THE SECOND SYSTEM FOR THE WEEKEND WILL DEVELOP INTO A WINTER STORM. A WINTER STORM WARNING IS IN EFFECT NORTH OF A LINE FROM MADISON TO THE TWIN CITIES AND LADYSMITH SATURDAY NIGHT THROUGH SUNDAY EVENING. SNOW WILL SPREAD INTO WESTERN MINNESOTA BY EARLY SATURDAY EVENING...AND THEN PUSH EAST ACROSS EASTERN MINNESOTA INTO WEST CENTRAL WISCONSIN BY LATE SATURDAY EVENING. THE SNOW COULD BE HEAVY AT TIMES. SNOWFALL ACCUMULATIONS IN THE WINTER STORM WARNING AREA WILL RANGE FROM 5 TO 8 INCHES...WITH THE HIGHEST TOTALS NORTHEAST OF INTERSTATE 94. A WINTER STORM WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR THE REST OF SOUTHERN MINNESOTA AND WESTERN WISCONSIN NOT COVERED BY THE WARNING NORTH OF A LINE FROM MANKATO TO EAU CLAIRE. SNOWFALL AMOUNTS IN THE WINTER STORM WATCH AREA COULD REACH 6 INCHES. STRONG NORTHWEST WINDS WILL DEVELOP BEHIND THE SYSTEM TO 15 TO 30 MPH...WITH SOME GUSTS UP TO 40 MPH OVER WESTERN MINNESOTA SUNDAY AFTERNOON. NEAR BLIZZARD CONDITIONS ARE EXPECTED GENERALLY WEST OF A LINE FROM ALEXANDRA TO WILLMAR AND MANKATO. AREAS OF BLOWING SNOW ARE ALSO POSSIBLE FURTHER EAST.
ORIGINAL STORY: The first major snowstorm of the season appears to be on our doorstep.
The National Weather Service in Chanhassen has issued a winter storm watch for Mendota Heights, Dakota County and the rest of the Twin Cities metro area for Saturday night and Sunday.
If the forecasted conditions come to fruition, Mendota Heights residents could see up five to seven inches of snow before the storm passes through on Sunday.
That would be on top of the one to three inches that’s expected to fall Friday afternoon and evening.
Here is the text of the latest storm watch, issued shortly after 10:30 a.m. Friday:
...WINTER STORM WATCH IN EFFECT FROM SATURDAY EVENING THROUGH SUNDAY AFTERNOON...
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN TWIN CITIES/CHANHASSEN HAS ISSUED A WINTER STORM WATCH...WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM SATURDAY EVENING THROUGH SUNDAY AFTERNOON.
• TIMING...SNOW...HEAVY AT TIMES...WILL SPREAD OVER THE AREA BY SATURDAY EVENING AND CONTINUE INTO SUNDAY AFTERNOON.
• MAIN IMPACT...THE POTENTIAL FOR 5 TO 7 INCHES OF SNOW.
• OTHER IMPACTS...SOME BLOWING AND DRIFTING SNOW DEVELOPING SUNDAY.
• PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...A WINTER STORM WATCH MEANS THERE IS A POTENTIAL FOR SIGNIFICANT SNOW...SLEET...OR ICE ACCUMULATIONS THAT MAY IMPACT TRAVEL. CONTINUE TO MONITOR THE LATEST FORECASTS.
HAZARDOUS WEATHER OUTLOOK
In addition to this weekend's storm watch, Mendota Heights and the rest of the Twin Cities are under a hazardous weather outlook. Here is the text of the outlook, issued at 12:15 p.m. Friday:
THIS HAZARDOUS WEATHER OUTLOOK IS FOR PORTIONS OF CENTRAL AND SOUTHERN MINNESOTA... AND WEST CENTRAL WISCONSIN.
DAY ONE...THIS AFTERNOON AND TONIGHT
A WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR MUCH OF WEST CENTRAL THROUGH SOUTH CENTRAL MINNESOTA THIS AFTERNOON AND TONIGHT FOR LIGHT SNOWFALL WITH AMOUNTS RANGING FROM 1 TO 3 INCHES.
DAYS TWO THROUGH SEVEN...SATURDAY THROUGH THURSDAY
A WINTER STORM WATCH IS IN EFFECT FOR MUCH OF THE REGION ON SATURDAY NIGHT AND SUNDAY. MODERATE TO HEAVY SNOW WILL DEVELOP LATE ON SATURDAY WITH TOTALS GENERALLY AROUND 5 TO 7 INCHES. STRONG WINDS WILL DEVELOP ON SUNDAY WHICH COULD CREATE NEAR BLIZZARD CONDITIONS...ESPECIALLY ACROSS WESTERN MINNESOTA. SUNDAY NIGHT WIND CHILL VALUES WILL BE -15 TO -20 DEGREES.
FINALLY .... SNOW
If we do receive a measurable snow this weekend, it would help close the gap on the sizable snowfall deficit the Twin Cities is experiencing.
The National Weather Service says the metro has received 0.8 inches of snow so far, which is 11.5 inches below normal.