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Anything outdoors!  Tornadoes, eagles, blizzards, or auroras.  If it is in the sky, running through the woods or swimming in the water, I'm there!

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Sunday, December 12, 2010

December 11th-12th Blizzard

Well, that was a decent blizzard. Haven't had everything come together for a long time where the heavy snow and the wind would combine to make a real mess out of everything. Obviously the big story was the roof of the Metro Dome (AKA Mall of America Field) collapsing from the weight of the snow but when you look at the overall scope of this system, it is pretty amazing.

Headed out around noon with a target of Hutchinson, MN. Not as much snow but winds gusting to over 40 kts with loose snow on the ground and moderate snowfall is always fun. The area around Silver Lake did not disappoint.

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Didn't see too many other people out and about...which was good. People took the warnings seriously and stayed put. We didn't have much difficulty getting around in the ZR2 and if the visibility dropped to zero with a gust, you just had to wait it out.

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One thing which is a lot of fun with this windy systems is seeing winter's version of gustnadoes. When a big gust hits the windward side of a hill or ridge, the snow explodes upwards with a pretty good twisting and turning motion. Most are short lived but some go for a few hundred yards before dying out.

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A hilltop view looking east along the Crow River as we head back into the trees and less wind.

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Here is a short clip of one of the snow gustnadoes. YT's compressor really pixelated the heck of this so it doesn't do justice. Maybe I'll try Vimeo again. The uncompressed video is much more impressive. We had to search for a spot that had a dark background to make them show up a little better also.




...and with all good blizzards comes the clean up. One of the neighbors getting an early starting moving the snow.

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Another system coming in on Wednesday and Thursday this week with a few more inches possible. Unbelievable we are just getting to the middle of December and already starting to run out of places to put it. When I was still living up north, the winter of '96-'97 we had 120" of snow for the year. Fargo and Grand Forks were decimated by flooding. This could be the year we hear of the Minnesota River communities really getting it again. I hope not, but Mother Nature seems to be stacking the deck pretty early in the game this snow season.

2 comments:

OSNW3 said...

The snownadoes are awesome!

eyestothesky said...

Wow! Beautiful pictures! I know i probably sound weird for saying this but i would to experience something like that!

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