11/25/15: Light Precip

It often does not take much precipitation this time of year to make for not so perfect travel.  That looks to be the case today.  Although amounts will be very light, the touch of snow or drizzle in the air will be just enough to keep travel from being perfect.  Road conditions this morning from the NDDOT have some scattered slippery patches as a cold front has triggered some areas of light snow and a few spots even a brief period of freezing drizzle.

7:40 AM Road Conditions
7:40 AM Road Conditions

Below is a few of Highway 85 just south of Williston.  Only a “dusting” of snow, but yet enough to settle on the roads and make for slippery conditions.

panger south
HIghway 85 near Panger, ND

Here is a view from near Kenmare on Highway 52.

kenmare north
Kenmare, ND

The light snow, patchy drizzle will impact central and western North Dakota a bit harder than eastern ND and western Minnesota, but even Fargo has experience some mist/drizzle in the air this morning.  One of those days that travel is very doable, just not perfect.  Otherwise, no major precipitation events foreseen this week.  The cold front (shown incorrectly as a surface trough on map below) will continue to push east today with cold air moving in with a brisk NW wind today.  The wind mostly in the 15-30 mph range with some higher gusts, so windy yes, but not crazy by North Dakota and northwestern Minnesota standards.

7:00 AM Surface Analysis
7:00 AM Surface Analysis

The high pressure center that is currently in Alberta will move southeasterly into the upper Midwest and dominate the weather over much of the Thanksgiving 4 day holiday travel weekend.  As that high moves south and east of North Dakota, eventually, this weekend (Saturday/Sunday) warmer air will move back into the state and with that a small threat of very light snow on Sunday.   Therefore, no major events this weekend, most of the time travel will be good, but on occasion, like this morning, some periods where travel with be doable but not perfect may occur.

Saturday 6:00 AM surface analysis. Orange line represent wind flow around high


Measurable precipitation beyond a trace or a couple of hundreds of an inch is not foreseen anytime soon, so unless a disturbance moves through this otherwise dry flow, mostly dry looks to be dominate in North Dakota for the next week.

Daryl Ritchison