Winter Storm of December 8-9, 2008

[Snow Totals] [Ice Totals]

What happened?

A low pressure system took shape over the southern Plains on Monday the 8th, with a warm front running well northeast of the low center, extending into the Great Lake States. Warm, moist air pushed into and north of this boundary, resulting in areas of precipitation across Iowa and Illinois in the morning, moving north in the early afternoon. Much of this preciptiation fell as freezing rain and sleet, with ice accumulations of 1/8 to as much as 1/2 inch. By mid to late afternoon, precipitation blossomed across southern Minnesota and central and southern Wisconsin.  While there was some sleet associated with this precipitation, the dominant precipitation type was snow.

In the evening, snow, moderate to heavy at times, fell across Minnesota and Wisconsin.  Over northeast Iowa and southwest Wisconsin, a wintery mix affected these areas initially, but transitioned to all snow between 6 and 8 pm.  Snowfall rates from 1/2 to 1 inch per hour occurred with the moderate to heavy snowbands. Snowfall would continue to fall overnight, bringing a few more inches of accumulation.

The winter storm continued to track northeast on Tuesday the 9th, with the low center moving over the eastern Great Lakes. The heavy to moderate snowfall had ended across most of the region by Tuesday morning, with the lingering light snow moving east by the afternoon. Portions of northern Illinois into southeast Wisconsin still had to contend with periods of moderate snowfall into the evening.  While the snow was ending, the winds had picked up, with gusty northwest winds at 15 to 25 mph resulting in some blowing and drifting snow.  The biggest impact was across the wind prone areas of southeast Minnesota and northeast Iowa, along with area ridge-tops.

Overall, the greatest snow amounts fell from around the Minnesota-Iowa border east into southwest Wisconsin, over the Wisconsin River Valley. Totals of 6 to 9 inches were common. The least amount of snow was found farther south, mostly south of a Fayette, IA to Fennimore, WI line.  Warmer air kept a wintery mix of the precipitation in these locations longer, thus leading to lower snow totals. However, while snow amounts were smaller, icing of 1/8 to near 1/4 inch was common, resulting in significant travel hazards.   


Snowfall map of December 8-9 2008

Snow Totals

...STORM TOTAL SNOWFALL ACCUMULATIONS...

LOCATION COUNTY SNOWFALL

IOWA

DECORAH 8NE WINNESHIEK 8.8
NEW HAMPTON CHICKASAW 8.5
DECORAH WINNESHIEK 8.0
DORCHESTER ALLAMAKEE 7.8
N. WASHINGTON CHICKASAW 7.5
WAUKON ALLAMAKEE 7.2
IONIA CHICKASAW 7.0
MCGREGOR 4W CLAYTON 7.0
ST ANSGAR 7NW MITCHELL 7.0
LANSING 4SE ALLAMAKEE 6.6
CALMAR WINNESHIEK 6.6
MONONA CLAYTON 6.5
ROCKFORD FLOYD 6.5
CRESCO HOWARD 6.5
OSAGE MITCHELL 6.3
KENDALLVILLE 4N WINNESHIEK 6.2
CHARLES CITY FLOYD 6.0
MONONA 6E CLAYTON 6.0
WATERVILLE 8S ALLAMAKEE 6.0
WAUKON 8NW ALLAMAKEE 6.0
POSTVILLE ALLAMAKEE 6.0
CLERMONT FAYETTE 5.9
FAYETTE FAYETTE 5.7
ELMA HOWARD 5.5
CRESCO HOWARD 5.0
ST ANSGAR MITCHELL 4.2
ST OLAF CLAYTON 3.8
VOLGA CLAYTON 2.3
STRAWBERRY POINT CLAYTON 2.0
ELKADER 6SSW CLAYTON 1.2
EDGEWOOD CLAYTON 1.0
OELWEIN FAYETTE 0.1


MINNESOTA

RUSHFORD FILLMORE 9.0
DODGE CENTER DODGE 8.5
LA CRESCENT 3W HOUSTON 8.0
AUSTIN MOWER 7.5
WINONA 3S WINONA 7.3
PETERSON 1S FILLMORE 7.1
HARMONY FILLMORE 7.0
PRESTON FILLMORE 6.8
SPRING VALLEY 3E FILLMORE 6.7
LANESBORO 1N FILLMORE 6.5
SPRING VALLEY 3SW FILLMORE 6.5
KELLOGG 4S WABASHA 6.5
HAMMOND 1S WABASHA 6.5
GRAND MEADOW MOWER 6.3
HOUSTON 5E HOUSTON 6.1
CHATFIELD 4W OLMSTED 6.0
GOODVIEW WINONA 5.9
READS LANDING 1W WABASHA 5.8
ROCHESTER AIRPORT OLMSTED 5.6
HIGHLAND FILLMORE 5.6
FOUNTAIN FILLMORE 5.5
LA CRESCENT 9W HOUSTON 5.5
LA CRESCENT 1N HOUSTON 5.5
ROCHESTER 2N OLMSTED 5.5
ST CHARLES 3N WINONA 5.5
BYRON OLMSTED 5.4
ORONOCO 2E OLMSTED 5.3
RENO 3SW HOUSTON 5.2
CALEDONIA 6S HOUSTON 5.0
ROCHESTER KTTC TV OLMSTED 5.0
BYRON 4N OLMSTED 5.0
WINONA WINONA 5.0
STEWARTVILLE OLMSTED 4.8
SPRING GROVE HOUSTON 4.7
WABASHA 5S WABASHA 4.5
MANTORVILLE DODGE 4.5
ROLLINGSTONE WINONA 4.5
CALEDONIA HOUSTON 4.2
PLAINVIEW WABASHA 4.0
THEILMAN WABASHA 3.7
ST CHARLES 5N WINONA 3.5
WABASHA WABASHA 2.8
ZUMBRO FALLS WABASHA 2.6
ELGIN 2SSW WABASHA 2.4
OAK CENTER WABASHA 2.0


WISCONSIN

MILLSTON JACKSON 11.0
MAUSTON WRJC RADIO JUNEAU 10.0
CAMP DOUGLAS JUNEAU 9.0
RICHLAND CENTER 1NW RICHLAND 9.0
MOUNT ZION 2NW CRAWFORD 8.8
FRIENDSHIP 2NE ADAMS 8.5
ITHACA 2S RICHLAND 8.5
RICHLAND CENTER RICHLAND 8.5
BOSCOBEL GRANT 8.0
BLUE RIVER GRANT 7.5
DE SOTO VERNON 7.5
BLACK RIVER FALLS 2E JACKSON 7.0
NECEDAH JUNEAU 7.0
GILLINGHAM RICHLAND 7.0
GALESVILLE TREMPEALEAU 7.0
VIROQUA VERNON 7.0
TUNNEL CITY MONROE 6.9
WARRENS MONROE 6.8
ARKDALE ADAMS 6.5
LA CROSSE NWS LA CROSSE 6.5
WARRENS 5WSW MONROE 6.5
FRENCH ISLAND LA CROSSE 6.4
HILLSBORO VERNON 6.4
WEST SALEM LA CROSSE 6.3
HOLMEN LA CROSSE 6.3
FRIENDSHIP ADAMS 6.2
PRAIRIE DU CHIEN CRAWFORD 6.2
MATHER JUNEAU 6.2
NECEDAH 2SE JUNEAU 6.0
CAMP DOUGLAS JUNEAU 6.0
LYNXVILLE CRAWFORD 6.0
BUFFALO BUFFALO 6.0
HUMBIRD 3NNW CLARK 6.0
LA CROSSE 5SE LA CROSSE 6.0
FOUR CORNERS MONROE 6.0
GALESVILLE 2ENE TREMPEALEAU 6.0
STEUBEN 2NW CRAWFORD 5.7
LA FARGE VERNON 5.7
STEUBEN 2SW CRAWFORD 5.6
HOLMEN 2S LA CROSSE 5.5
SPARTA MONROE 5.5
WESTBY 3ENE VERNON 5.4
ONALASKA LA CROSSE 5.2
STODDARD 2NE VERNON 5.2
VALLEY 1NW VERNON 5.0
DELLWOOD ADAMS 5.0
MERRILLAN JACKSON 5.0
CENTERVILLE TREMPEALEAU 5.0
WHITEHALL TREMPEALEAU 5.0
WILTON 3E MONROE 5.1
CASHTON MONROE 4.9
INDEPENDENCE 3NE TREMPEALEAU 4.5
OSSEO TREMPEALEAU 4.0
BLAIR TREMPEALEAU 4.0
ROCK DAM LAKE CLARK 4.3
MONDOVI 6S BUFFALO 4.0
GILMANTON 8SE BUFFALO 4.0
NEILLSVILLE 4NNE CLARK 4.0
ABBOTSFORD CLARK 4.0
TAYLOR JACKSON 4.0
WESTBORO TAYLOR 3.5
RIB LAKE TAYLOR 3.5
LONGWOOD CLARK 3.0
LOYAL 6SE CLARK 3.0
COLBY 4SW CLARK 3.0
CUBA CITY 2NW GRANT 3.0
OWEN CLARK 2.7
MEDFORD TAYLOR 2.5
LUBLIN TAYLOR 2.0
PERKINSTOWN 5E TAYLOR 2.0
MEDFORD 4NW TAYLOR 2.0
SINSINAWA GRANT 2.0
PLATTEVILLE GRANT 1.6

OBSERVATIONS ARE COLLECTED FROM A VARIETY OF SOURCES WITH VARYING
EQUIPMENT AND EXPOSURE. NOT ALL DATA LISTED IS CONSIDERED OFFICIAL.

Ice Totals From Freezing Rain or Sleet

PRELIMINARY LOCAL STORM REPORT...SUMMARY
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE LA CROSSE WI
918 AM CST TUE DEC 09 2008

..TIME... ...EVENT... ...CITY LOCATION... ...LAT.LON...
..DATE... ....MAG.... ..COUNTY LOCATION..ST.. ...SOURCE....
..REMARKS..

0225 PM FREEZING RAIN PLATTEVILLE 42.74N 90.48W
12/08/2008 E0.12 INCH GRANT WI TRAINED SPOTTER

1/8 INCH GLAZE ON EXPOSED SURFACES

0230 PM SLEET SPRING VALLEY 43.69N 92.39W
12/08/2008 U0.00 INCH FILLMORE MN CO-OP OBSERVER

SLEET OCCURRING AT THIS TIME.

0326 PM FREEZING RAIN RICHLAND CENTER 43.34N 90.38W
12/08/2008 E0.10 INCH RICHLAND WI EMERGENCY MNGR

GLAZE COVERING ROADS AND EXPOSED SURFACES CAUSING
HAZARDOUS TRAVEL

0330 PM FREEZING RAIN VIROQUA 43.56N 90.89W
12/08/2008 E0.02 INCH VERNON WI CO-OP OBSERVER

THIN LAYER OF ICE ACCUMULATION ON AUTO. VQAW3 CO-OP
OBSERVER.

0410 PM FREEZING RAIN FAYETTE 42.84N 91.80W
12/08/2008 E0.05 INCH FAYETTE IA CO-OP OBSERVER

LIGHT ICE GLAZE OVER THE PAST 3 HOURS. FYTI4 CO-OP
OBSERVER.

0428 PM FREEZING RAIN CHARLES CITY 43.07N 92.68W
12/08/2008 E0.10 INCH FLOYD IA CO-OP OBSERVER

GLAZE COVERING ROADS AND EXPOSED SURFACES CAUSING
HAZARDOUS TRAVEL

0538 PM FREEZING RAIN WAUKON 43.27N 91.48W
12/08/2008 E0.25 INCH ALLAMAKEE IA CO-OP OBSERVER

GLAZE COVERING ROADS AND EXPOSED SURFACES CAUSING
HAZARDOUS TRAVEL

0600 PM FREEZING RAIN 4 WSW LANCASTER 42.83N 90.78W
12/08/2008 E0.15 INCH GRANT WI CO-OP OBSERVER

BETWEEN 0.10 AND 0.15 INCHES OF ICE ACCUMULATION BEFORE
SNOW STARTED. LANW3 CO-OP OBSERVER.

0610 PM FREEZING RAIN 4 SE STEUBEN 43.14N 90.80W
12/08/2008 M0.06 INCH CRAWFORD WI CO-OP OBSERVER

1/8 OF AN INCH ICE ACCUMULATION OVER THE PAST SEVERAL
HOURS. STEW3 CO-OP OBSERVER.

0716 PM FREEZING RAIN EDGEWOOD 42.65N 91.40W
12/08/2008 E0.06 INCH CLAYTON IA TRAINED SPOTTER

GLAZE COVERING EXPOSED SURFACES AND SOME ROADS.

0910 PM FREEZING RAIN CLAREMONT 44.04N 93.00W
12/08/2008 M0.10 INCH DODGE MN CO-OP OBSERVER

ICE ACCUMULATION DURING THE AFTERNOON AND EVENING. CMTI4
CO-OP OBSERVER.

0320 AM FREEZING RAIN 10 SE LANCASTER 42.75N 90.57W
12/09/2008 E0.10 INCH GRANT WI LAW ENFORCEMENT

SECONDARY ROADS HAVE SIGNIFICANT GLAZING.

0709 AM FREEZING RAIN OELWEIN 42.68N 91.91W
12/09/2008 E0.06 INCH FAYETTE IA CO-OP OBSERVER

1/16 OF AN INCH ICE ACCUMULATION FOR THE 24 HOUR PERIOD 7
AM TO 7 AM. OLNI4 CO-OP OBSERVER.

0710 AM FREEZING RAIN NEW HAMPTON 43.06N 92.31W
12/09/2008 M0.12 INCH CHICKASAW IA CO-OP OBSERVER

1/8 OF AN INCH ICE ACCUMULATION FOR THE 24 HOUR PERIOD 7
AM TO 7 AM. NHPI4 CO-OP OBSERVER.

0710 AM FREEZING RAIN CALMAR 43.18N 91.87W
12/09/2008 E0.13 INCH WINNESHIEK IA AMATEUR RADIO

1/8 OF AN INCH OF ICE ACCUMULATION FOR THE 24 HOUR PERIOD
7 AM TO 7 AM. CMRI4 CO-OP OBSERVER.

0915 AM FREEZING RAIN SINSINAWA 42.52N 90.53W
12/09/2008 M0.50 INCH GRANT WI CO-OP OBSERVER

STORM TOTAL ICE ACCUMULATION. SWAW3 CO-OP OBSERVER.


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