Six inches to a foot of snow could fall by Monday morning.

It looks like residents of Crookston and a large swath of the Red River Valley and northern Minnesota are in for a snowy end to 2019, as a winter storm is bearing down on the region from the southwest and is poised to drop at least six inches of snow, and likely several inches more in some areas beginning early Saturday.

 

The National Weather Service as of this story’s writing has issued a winter storm watch from Saturday morning through late Sunday night, but you can bet that as forecasters get a better handle on the storm system’s track, the watch will be upgraded to a winter storm warning at some point Friday. Of course, it could be downgraded to a winter weather advisory, but given the size of the system that seems unlikely.

 

So how much snow could fall? The NWS says at the Grand Forks forecast office website that most areas in the watch zone will receive at least six inches of snow and some areas will receive more than a foot. The Weather Underground website projects that 3.6 inches of snow will fall in Crookston on Saturday, followed by 5.9 inches on Sunday. For those doing the math, that adds up to 9.5 inches of snow. The system is expected to linger into early Monday as well.

 

It’ll be windy, too, with winds out of the north throughout the weekend gusting to 40 miles per hour. That will create hazardous driving conditions, especially in open areas.

 

While winds of that significance can produce life-threatening wind chill readings, the actual temperature as the system rolls through won’t be exactly frigid for the end of December. Daytime highs on both Saturday and Sunday are expected to be in the upper-20s, with morning lows in the lower-20s and upper-teens. The daytime temperatures could actually produce a mix of precipitation, the NWS states.