A blast of arctic air will follow a storm system through the Midwest today. Frigid conditions have already overtaken the northern Plains.
Highs on Sunday failed to surpass the zero-degree mark in parts of Montana and the Dakotas. Temperatures today will drop dramatically from Minnesota and Wisconsin to Nebraska and Kansas.
Today, cities including Minneapolis, Minn., Omaha, Neb., Sioux Falls, S.D. and Des Moines, Iowa, will all be 15 to 20 degrees colder than normal for this time of the year. Harsh winds will make it feel even colder.
After a storm system drops a fresh 1 to 3 inches of snow over parts of the Great Lakes today, the bitterly cold air will invade on Tuesday. This will spark another round of lake-effect snow.
On Tuesday to Thursday, bands of lake-effect snow will drop several more inches of snow each day in the typical downwind areas of the Great Lakes. Snowfall totals during this time could reach a foot or two before the event wraps up.
Gusty winds and blowing snow will make travel difficult in these areas as the snow continues to pile up. Those braving the brutal conditions should be sure to bundle up and take along blankets in case they become stranded or get into an accident.
The relentless cold can cause frostbite to develop in less than half of an hour. Be sure to limit skin exposure when heading outside.