Winter storm watch: A foot of snow possible in the Twin Cities

The snow is expected to bring heavy snow most of the day Friday.
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A foot of snow could be on the way for the Twin Cities when a winter storm blasts through Minnesota Friday and Saturday. In advance of the system, the National Weather Service has issued a winter storm watch. 

The watch covers the entire state, with the 7-county metro area forecast to get 6-10 inches of snow Friday through Saturday morning, followed by northwest winds up to 35 mph causing blowing and drifting. 

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Here's the expected snowfall range from the National Weather Service, which shows 12 inches of snow is possible in the Twin Cities and surrounding areas. 

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Here's a look at where within those ranges the NWS is currently predicting. It shows 9 inches for the Twin Cities and St. Cloud, with 8 inches expected in Duluth and Mankato. These estimates are subject to change. 

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"The heaviest snow will fall during the second half of Friday, with blowing snow becoming more likely on Saturday as winds increase as the system departs," the weather service says. 

The American model's simulated future radar shows what could unfold between Friday morning and Saturday night, with heavy snow pounding Minnesota for most of the day Friday before letting up Saturday, only to pave the way for fierce northwest winds that will cause blowing and drifting snow. 

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The European model is nearly identical in storm track and intensity. 

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Before the snowstorm arrives Minnesota will plunge into bone-chilling cold conditions. Temps will dip below zero overnight through Thursday morning, with winds whipping around to bring wind chill readings to -20F to -35F. 

A wind chill advisory has been posted between midnight and 6 a.m. in the metro, and from 9 p.m. Wednesday until 9 a.m. Thursday in most of greater Minnesota. 

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