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2/13/07-2/14/07 NOW: MIDWEST (WINTER PRECIP)

This system is quite impressive on the WV loop... Overlaying the 15 minute lightning data, frequent lightning has been occuring along the path of the shortwave, tracking from NM up through KS and NE.
 

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Well, nothing too exciting to report from here so far, but the first snowflakes are just now finally starting to make it to the surface. The leading edge of the northward advancing snow is being chewed at pretty vigorously by the strengthening dry northeast surface winds.

Radar seems to be reflecting the model trends nicely, so I think the forecasts should pan out okay.

We have about 5" on the ground right now from previous snows. It looks like that depth will double by tomorrow night...
 
Very heavy snow falling here in eastern Illinois. Probably already 2-3 inches of new accumulation in the first couple hours of snowfall. This is on top of the 4 inches we already had on the ground from the previous storm. A very intense band is about 15 minutes away, so things could pick up even more shortly. Winds are already sustained over 20 mph as well...
 
3" of snow as of 1am in Overland Park (KC Metro)...moderate to heavy snow continues to fall. It's going to be a very pretty snow to wake up to. The wet snow has attached to everything like somebody sprayed foam.
 
3 hours of freezing rain so far here with temps wavering between 31F and 33F. Our DPs are slowly rising toward the freezing mark so I don't think this will last much longer. I'm at 33F here at the house, and fog is starting to form down in the valley -showing we are close to saturation and the end of the evaporative cooling support. A light glaze on plants and metal objects outside now, but nothing on the roads. At least we saw *something* here before the warm wedge kills the event. Thankfully, the mountains are a short drive away where upslope will keep things cold and make the icing a little more interesting tomorrow - so a short winter wx chase will probably be in order.
 
1.8 inches so far at 9100S and 3400W on the southwest side of chicago. Looks like there are some breaks in the snow.....I am currently experiencing one, because as I went out to measure I noticed the only snow falling was the snow from my house being blown about.
 
A bit over 3" of new snow here as of 7am local time. That makes the current snowdepth at 8". The winds are really picking up here recently whipping the snow around quite a bit. I'm sure out in the open areas the snow is really beginning to drift.

Model and radar trends point to another 8-10 hours of snow, so another 2-3" looks reasonable here.
 
4.3 inches here now on SW side of Chicago with 3-6 more hours to go. Maybe some lake effect too? I would anticipate up to 4 more inches to go where I live. Too bad I haven't moved yet. My new house site the guy across the street just measure 9.7 inches 10 miles south of Kankakee.
 
Finaled out at 4.4" of snow in Overland Park. The snow compressed alot during the early stages of the snow, so the exact total may have been closer to 5" for the storm total.
 
This is INTENSE. My best guess is that there is about a foot of snow on the ground already, but drifting makes it hard to guess. Winds are currently sustained at 40 mph, and because of that we've been upgraded to a blizzard warning. With many hours to go I can only imagine how bad it's going to it. The University of Illinois has shut down, for only the second time because of weather. Two Illinois basketball players were also in an accident this morning, one of which is in critical condition right now.
 
We finally got the changeover to snow in Edwardsville, Il around 11 a.m. The temperature remained above freezing until around 7 or 8 a.m., after which we got an hour or so of predominantly freezing rain with some sleet, then mainly sleet from around 9 to 11 a.m. This resulted in a quarter inch or so of ice and sleet on the roads before the changeover to snow. I think we will get a quick 2-4 inches of snow here between now and around 2:00 p.m., then becoming lighter and more showery after that. There have been a few reports of thundersnow around Alton and in the west suburbs of St. Louis, but no thunder here yet. We do have a cluster of heavy precip pushing up from just to our south now, so still could get some, I suppose. Many freeways are closed in the St. Louis area due to icing and pileups.
 
We've received about 6"-7" of snow here in West Central IL. I'm off work today since the schools are all shut down!:) Winds are gusting to near 40 mph, but our lower snow totals out west are preventing total blizzard criteria. However, this was a very nice storm system to say the least. It looks as if the low pressure system is moving a bit further north than originally anticipated, so watch out Eastern IL. Western IL University also made a rare choice to close today, so that makes twice in a year.
 
C'mon over to Springfield. I have 13" here, not counting the waist high drifts. We have near white-out conditions, and the plows have just given up. :)

They've quit here too and we've only got half as much. I'm going to predict 15"-18" is not out of the question along the I-72 corridor.
 
Just got done shoveling, and measured several areas of my yard and driveway. About 4" on the ground so far. Heaviest bands have yet to come :)
 
We're up to about 6" here. My fear of a dry slot rolling in, cutting off the snow appears as if it isnt going to occur. Calling for 6-10 more inches tonight, and 2-4 more inches tommorow. :D
 
The heavier snow is over here, with about 3 inches, as well as a quarter inch of ice and sleet under the snow. Most of the snow fell between about 11:20 and 2:30. We do have some light snow moving in from the NW with the trailing short wave over northern MO, so we might still get the total up to 4. Lots of blowing and drifting, and in part due to the ice under the snow, numerous road closures in the St. Louis area due to wrecks and pileups. Snow amounts vary widely in the STL area from NW to SE, with around 6 inches in some of the northwestern locations down to mostly rain and sleet in the far SE.
 
A fine snow has started to fall here in Westland. It's accumulating quickly and visibility is down to a half mile with about an 1/8th inch on the ground. Winds are gusting between 20-30mph.

Update
1/4" of snow on the ground the flakes are getting bigger. Visibility is still low at about a half mile. Winds are about the same with gusts probably around 35 mph.
 
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We have about 6 inches of new snow from this system so far (on top of about 4 inches already on the ground) in the northern suburbs of Chicago. The lake effect snow machine has just been turned on but it looks like only another couple inches will fall from that in my county (Lake County, IL). Right now, it's coming down at a decent rate of about an inch per hour. It does seem like more that that due to the blowing snow mixed in though. South of the city there is a narrow lake effect snow band dumping about 2-3 inches per hour over an area from about Michigan City, Indiana to Kankakee, Illinois and it's been doing so for the last hour and a half.

The main threat in the Northern suburbs will be blowing and drifting snow. There was a 4 foot drift against my garage earlier today. Many of the roads will be clear tonight but there will be several isolated patches of snow cover. If somebody is on a clear road driving at normal speeds and then hits a 2-3 inch snow patch on the road, it could spell disaster. I expect more than a few accidents due to this overnight. The snowplows in my town of Mundelein have all but quit plowing the side streets. Their main concern at this moment are the major roads since they cover back up almost as soon as they are cleared. The crew in Mundelein always does a spectacular job keeping the roads clear (I'd say the best in the county, if not the state), but even they are having trouble today.

As of this current moment, the winds aren't as bad as I thought they would be. Only about 10mph sustained with semi-frequent gusts to 20 and very brief isolated gusts to 30. Some of you in the central parts of Illinois are seeing double that with reports of gusts into the 50mph range.

Most schools even here in the northeastern part of the state have been closed. My former college, Western Illinois University in Macomb, has been shut down for the second time this year. Previous to 2006/2007, the school wasn't shut down for over 20 years due to the weather.

Funny how a foot of snow sounds like nothing compared to areas like Oswego, NY (who will see another couple of feet in the next couple days), but this is the first major snowstorm for many areas in the Midwest this season. As I’ve read on here before, if it’s going to be cold, it might as well snow. And if it’s going to snow, it might as well snow a lot. Enjoy it folks.
 
Still snowing very hard here... last total I heard for here in Champaign was 12 inches, with still several hours to go. This is in addition to the 5 inches we already had, so snow cover is nearing 20 inches. Drifts are up to my waist and higher in some areas. I went out and shot some video and still photos and will post those later on.

Classes have already been cancelled for tomorrow as well.
 
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Looks like we got almost 7" here in Erie IL (about 25 miles northeast of Moline/Quad Cities IL). Still snowing lightly, but I think the accumulating snow is about finished.

Snowdepth is now 11".

Edit: I'll post some pics in the report thread later tonight after I get done removing the snow from my driveway and walks lol.
 
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The snow ended in Edwardsville, IL around 8 p.m., as the last batch of snow moved through, weakening as it did so. The storm total here was about three and a half inches. Due to both the ice underneath and the considerable blowing and drifting, the snow caused more problems in the STL area than you would generally expect with the amount of snow that fell (even for STL drivers, LOL).
 
Still snowing here in Lake County, IL. The lake effect weather machine is certainly coming down harder than I expected. We've had a narrow band come right over my town of Mundelein the last few hours, which has put on another 4 inches and it's still coming down at about an inch per hour. Radar is indicating the lake effect snow is starting to make a slow shift towards the south. Tack on the blowing/drifting snow and forget about the roads. The plows just can't keep up.

NWS has put Lake County under a Winter Storm Warning until tomorrow morning. Previous to this most current Winter Storm Warning my county has only been under a Snow Advisory. Pretty impressive seeing as though there is close to a foot of new snow here now and it's still coming via lake effect. To be fair, I think my town is "localized" even within Lake County and most of the area hasn't seen quite this much. I'll know tomorrow when I venture a little further from home. Also, since this lake effect snow is not technically part of the winter storm system which came through earlier, I think the NWS was correct in not issuing a Winter Storm Warning for my county (Lake County was the first county north of the winter storm warning).

As the system moves further away, the winds will take a more northerly direction shifting the lake effect snow into the southern suburbs of Chicago and into Northwest Indiana where they could see another 6 inches of new snow tomorrow. Talk about adding insult to injury (or for us enthusiasts, adding more fun to fun).

The Winter Storm Warning for Lake County, Illinois is in effect for another 11 hours but I don't expect the snow to last quite that long. Maybe half that long if we're lucky. Blowing/drifting snow is a whole nother’ story.

*EDIT: Upon finishing this post, the snow has drastically reduced to maybe ¼ inch per hour. Looks like another band will enter Lake County soon but the lake effect is shifting south quite quickly now.
 
Uploaded a video of the snow earlier today, around noon.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xVy5mCDPYf0

Since the video was shot, the snow totals have about doubled to about 15 inches here. Hard to say the exact totals with the drifts, some of which are up to my waist and chest.

FWIW, the Illini basketball player who was in critical condition has been upgraded to serious condition. He suffered a severe concussion when their car lost control on the snowy road and hit a tree.
 
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