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A little or a lot? Potential of up to 6 inches of May snow in Brainerd area

This screenshot of a National Weather Service in Duluth report shows how much rain and snow is in the forecast to fall Wednesday night, May 8, into Thursday in northeastern Minnesota and the northern portion of Wisconsin.1 / 3
Snow accumulates at Fish Lake in Pierz Wednesday, May 8. Submitted Photo2 / 3
A bunny huddles next to a tree as it snows Wednesday, May 8, in front of St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Brainerd. Kelly Humphrey / Brainerd Dispatch3 / 3

If all the stars align perfectly with the weather overnight Wednesday, May 8, the Brainerd area could possibly see up to 4-6 inches of snow.

But more likely—residents may just see a trace to an inch of snow by the time the rain and snowstorm makes it way through the lakes area by Thursday afternoon, according to the National Weather Service in Duluth's forecast. Lead Meteorologist Jonathan Wolfe with the NWS Wednesday hosted a webinar on the potential snowstorm, stating the Brainerd area is still looking at a trace to an inch of snow. However, he said the Brainerd area possibly could see up to 4-6 inches if all the weather factors align just right in the atmosphere with the ground and air temperatures, creating more snow than rain.

The NWS issued a winter weather advisory and a winter storm warning to the region northeast of Brainerd. The snow is expected to be wet and heavy and there is a potential of a foot of snow near Lake Superior. Power outages may occur. Northeastern Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin will be the areas most impacted by the snow.

Rain transitioned into snow around 6:30 p.m. Wednesday night and was expected to turn into heavy, wet snow by midnight, with the snow ending around noon Thursday. The wind may play a factor in the weather, as Brainerd area residents are expected to see a maximum of 29 mph wind gusts Wednesday night.

The forecast

The lakes area forecast calls for a 90% chance of rain before midnight Wednesday, with a low of about 34 degrees. It is expected to get windy, with a north wind around 15 mph and gusts as high as 30 mph. Going into the overnight Wednesday, snow accumulation of less than a half inch is possible. Rain and snow is likely before 9 a.m. Thursday, with a chance of rain between 9-10 a.m. Thursday's high should be near 52 and the winds are expected to continue to be strong. During the day Thursday, the chance of precipitation is 60%, with less than a half-inch of snow possible.

Friday should be sunny with a high near 60 degrees, and Saturday there is a chance of showers with thunderstorms possible after 2 p.m. Anglers on Saturday—the fishing opener—are expected to have a high near 60 degrees and on Sunday, Mother's Day, the high may be 61.

Jennifer Kraus

A big part of my day is chasing down tips on a variety of breaking news stories, relating to vehicle crashes, fires, police incidents and court cases. I’m always thankful when people call in tips to alert me on an incident so I can follow up and see if the tip is actually something that occurred or is a rumor. It’s a big scope to keep track of as we not only cover Brainerd and Crow Wing County incidents, but we also cover the surrounding counties and cities. I also gather information on the entertainment scene, so if you are hosting a band or choir concert, an art exhibit, a play or other theater production -- I want to hear about it. If you know of a story on any of these beats, give me a shout! To help support local journalism, click here to sign up to receive a Dispatch digital subscription to our e-edition or to receive the printed paper at your door, or to get both.

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