As of early Friday morning, a Winter Storm Watch has been issued for southern Minnesota and the two northern rows of Iowa counties. Whether the snowfall totals are off or not, this storm system will be affecting travel around here all day Sunday. The timeframe for this system is from about 1-3am Sunday morning until 6pm Sunday. Heavier snowfall is going to be coming down between 5am Sunday morning and Noon Sunday, then tapering to light-moderate snow Sunday afternoon. The wind will not be much of an issue through most of Sunday, but will pick up enough later in the afternoon to throw snow around enough to be an issue on the roads in wide open spaces.

My first shot at snowfall totals out of the Sunday storm system is between 6 and 9 inches for the Rochester area. Totals will taper off toward the Iowa border but snow will still be a good shovel-able 3 to 6 inches on the border with those lower amounts toward Mason City, Iowa. We shouldn’t be stranded for days with this one, so no need to clean the shelves of milk and bread.

The Winter Storm Watch will be updated to either a Winter Storm Warning (higher totals) or a Winter Weather Advisory (lower totals but still a concern for travelers) sometime Saturday, prior to the storm’s onset.

Whether amounts are high or low in the forecast range, travel plans will be tested Sunday and anyone in the snow removal industry has a busy weekend ahead. I will have additional winter storm coverage on Post Bulletin’s digital sources through this weekend.