As the Panhandle Low approached the region on December 22nd temperatures warmed to above freezing, allowing the initial precipitation to begin as rain. As I left Washburn on Saturday at 8:00 for the Holiday weekend, I measured 9" of snow still on the ground with moderate rain. By afternoon the temperature started to drop below freezing turning the precip over to snow. Moderate snow continued into Sunday with strong west winds creating whiteout conditions. Pressure and winds.
The Panhandle Low strengthened as it moved north, both tapping into Gulf Moisture and phasing with a weak northern low pressure near Lake Superior. The lowest pressure I recorded was 29.207 "Hg (991.99 mb) at noon on Sunday the 23rd. The tight gradient behind the system created strong gusty winds. Some peaks: West of Washburn: 29 mph Ironwood: 31 mph Duluth Airport: 35 mph Duluth Harbor: 44 mph How much snow fell at my place? After I returned home from Christmas I poked around and shoveled, measured and melted and I finally have some snowfall measurements and liquid equivalents that I'm confident in.
Rain that fell on the 22nd: 0.35" Snow from Dec 22-23: 10" Water equivalent from 22-23: ??
Snow from Dec 25-26: 5"
Water equivalent from 22-26: 1.81"Total Liquid from 22-26: 2.16" Pictures:
first: my parent's back yard in southern Ashland Co.
second: a township road very near my parent's house
third: driving north on Highway 13 on Christmas Day, just south of Glidden
fourth: driving north on Highway 13 on Christmas Day, just south of Mellen
And then a stalled Clipper.
After the Panhandle Low an Alberta Clipper slid southeast over the region on Monday and Tuesday. It was expected to have limited moisture to work with, to produce only an inch or two, it stalled over Wisconsin. Suddenly we were looking at the possibilities of up to 6" of snow, for which Snow Advisories were immediately issued. From this clipper I received 5" of snow here on Maple Hill. The weather between Tuesday and Friday has been dominated by weak high pressure, providing for a little quite weather.
Now, Friday the 28th, another Panhandle Low has developed, but much weaker and is tracking farther south and east -- over Chicago-land. We are only expecting light amounts, with up to 6" over Milwaukee.