Summary of January 3-4 Winter Weather

Winter weather once again came to the area from Saturday afternoon through early Sunday morning, January 3rd and 4th.  This weather occurred as a trough of low pressure passed across the area bringing widespread freezing rain and freezing drizzle to the region.  This caused a glaze of ice over much of the ground and other objects, which created hazardous road conditions.  In addition, light snow fell later on in the night, however most places only saw snow accumulations of up to one half of an inch.  

Why was freezing rain/freezing drizzle dominant during this time period?  Below is a loop of an analysis of the warmest temperatures in the atmosphere (left), and regional radar imagery (right). In the left image, the warm temperatures (reds and yellows) depict where the atmosphere will support a mix of either sleet or freezing rain, and the blue areas depict areas where snow is more probable. Note that much of the area is covered by warm temperatures aloft,  and the "zero line", or the line delineating the freezing rain and snow, remains draped over the area through the evening, yielding the potential for multiple precipitation types.

Animation of Radar/Temperatures Supporting Ice

 

...RAINFALL TOTALS ACROSS THE AREA...
(GENERALLY ALL FELL AS FREEZING RAIN)

LOCATION COUNTY RAINFALL


...IOWA...

EDGEWOOD CLAYTON 0.16
FAYETTE FAYETTE 0.12
CHARLES CITY COOP FLOYD 0.09
CRESCO HOWARD 0.09
ELKADER 6SSW CLAYTON 0.09
LANSING 4SE ALLAMAKEE 0.08
VOLGA 1NE CLAYTON 0.08


...MINNESOTA...

GRAND MEADOW MOWER 0.15
WABASHA WABASHA 0.15
SPRING VALLEY 1 SE FILLMORE 0.14
ZUMBRO FALLS WABASHA 0.13
THEILMAN 1SSW WABASHA 0.12
LA CRESCENT DAM 7 WINONA 0.12
CALEDONIA HOUSTON 0.12
LANESBORO FILLMORE 0.11
WINONA DAM 5A WINONA 0.10
ELGIN 2SSW OLMSTED 0.10
ROCHESTER INTL AP OLMSTED 0.09
AUSTIN AWOS MOWER 0.08
MINNESOTA CITY DAM 5 WINONA 0.05


...WISCONSIN...

OSSEO TREMPEALEAU 0.28
NEILLSVILLE 3SW CLARK 0.18
ELK MOUND DUNN 0.17
RICHLAND CENTER RICHLAND 0.17
ALMA DAM 4 BUFFALO 0.16
LA CROSSE WFO LA CROSSE 0.13
DIAMOND LAKE RAWS TAYLOR 0.12
SPARTA - FT MC COY MONROE 0.12
BOSCOBEL ASOS GRANT 0.11
WARRENS 5WSW MONROE 0.11
BLAIR TREMPEALEAU 0.10
BLACK RIVER FALLS JACKSON 0.10
STODDARD 3NE VERNON 0.10
FOUR CORNERS MONROE 0.09
TAYLOR JACKSON 0.09
BOSCOBEL RAWS GRANT 0.08
LA CROSSE ASOS LA CROSSE 0.08
NECEDAH 2SE JUNEAU 0.05
WESTBY 3ENE VERNON 0.05
STEUBEN CRAWFORD 0.05
HILLSBORO VERNON 0.04
LYNXVILLE DAM 9 CRAWFORD 0.04
GENOA DAM 8 VERNON 0.03


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