Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Bright Blue Afternoon Today, Inteterstates Closed During Storm

It's a bright blue winter afternoon here in Sauk Centre, Minnesota:

Image from my webcam, Small Town America: Central Minnesota. (February 13, 2013, 4:31 p.m.)

Sunday was a different story. Interstate highways were closed: I29 was closed from Watertown, South Dakota, to the Canadian border; I94 from Alexandria, Minnesota, about 20 miles northwest of here, to Jamestown, North Dakota. I stayed inside and enjoyed not having to travel.

In the news:
"Part of Interstate 29 closed; storm strands UND hockey team in South Dakota"
Associated Press, via The Bismark Tribune (February 10, 2013, 2:16 p.m.)

"The University of North Dakota hockey team is stranded in South Dakota after officials closed a portion of Interstate 29 because of a winter storm.

"The the team and many fans were on their way back from a weekend series in Omaha, Neb., when officials in South Dakota closed Interstate 29 from Watertown to the North Dakota border....

"...Terry Woster with the South Dakota Department of Public Safety says Interstate 90 is closed between Wall and Chamberlain. Interstate 29 has been closed from Watertown, S.D., to Fargo, N.D.

"In North Dakota, officials have issued a no travel advisory for the southeast portion of the state."

"I-29 closed from S.D. to Grand Forks; US 2 closed Grand Forks to Crookston"
Grand Forks Herald (February 10, 2013, 10:00 p.m.)

"A major storm swept through the Red River Valley on Sunday as Blizzard Cooper dropped heavy snow and blew in high winds that closed interstates and other roads, cancelled events and left some travelers far from home.

"About 8:30 p.m. today, U.S. Highway 2 was closed from Grand Forks east to Crookston as more snow wrapped around to the northern Red River Valley and winds increased.

"The Herald is naming the storm after media personality Anderson Cooper, who befriended local columnist Marilyn Hagerty after she went viral in 2012.

"The Grand Forks area remains in a winter storm warning until Monday morning, while the southern Red River Valley remains in a blizzard warning.

"Snowfall from Cooper varied throughout the region - between 2 to 6 inches was forecast for Grand Forks, while Fargo, Jamestown and southeastern North Dakota had the most snowfall, with about a foot reported in Fargo and 14 inches at Colfax, N.D., the National Weather Service said Sunday. Snow totals increased as the storm moved east; some parts of the Minnesota lakes area were expected to get as much as 16 inches.

"But snow wasn't Cooper's only problem; high winds caused widespread white-out conditions and forced officials to close Interstate 29 from the South Dakota border to Grand Forks and Interstate 94 from Jamestown, N.D., east to Alexandria, Minn.

"Snow and wind gusts approaching 35 mph stranded the UND hockey team and many fans returning from the games in Omaha on Friday and Saturday. The UND hockey team took shelter in Sisseton, S.D., and a bus full of fans stayed at the Summit, S.D., community center, where area residents made them welcome and even cooked for them...."

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