National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce


A strong winter storm developed as a upper level trough moved across the Northern Plains. Initially light freezing rain and snow caused dangerous travel conditions as this system was approaching Friday January 17. Strong southeast winds gusting as high as 60 mph resulted in blowing snow and even whiteout conditions across southeast North Dakota and the Red River Valley in Minnesota through the day on the 17th. Eventually heavy snow spread across the region from the south to the north late afternoon through the night, with several bands resulting in higher totals in excess of 8 inches. While there was a lull in winds as they shifted, strong northwest winds arrived during the nighttime period and blizzard conditions developed across the entire Red River Valley into the Devils Lake Basin. These blizzard conditions continued through the afternoon Saturday January 18th mainly in the open country. 


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