The third major winter storm in a month is headed for Iowa and promises more of the same — lots of snow, high winds and bitter cold. Miles Schumacher, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, says the flakes will be flying by midday in western Iowa and the system will head east, blanketing virtually all of Iowa.
Schumacher says this storm will be different from the previous two based on the type of snow it’ll drop. While the earlier blizzards brought very wet snow, this one should generate a lighter, fluffier snow. Still, he says, that could bring even more problems with blowing, drifting snow when the winds pick up.
The forecast calls for between four and six inches of snow in western Iowa, five to eight inches in eastern Iowa, and the central region of Iowa will get clobbered, too. Schumacher predicts six to nine inches in central Iowa by the time the storm ends on Thursday afternoon.
The bulk of the snow, he says, should fall this afternoon and tonight. He says temperatures will plummet for the first half of the weekend but there is hope for a warm-up early next week. He says the cold air coming behind this storm system will likely be the coldest we’ve seen this season, with very low temperatures on Friday night.
High temperatures Friday may not even get above zero while the lows could be in the teens and 20s below zero, with wind chills even lower. Schumacher says warmer air should arrive by Monday or Tuesday that will bring temperatures closer to normal. Lately, Iowa’s seen temps 30-degrees colder than the norm.
By Pat Powers, KQWC, Webster City