Coldest air of the season en route to MN via the polar vortex

Cold air from the arctic is going to punch Minnesota on Thursday, then again before Thanksgiving.

Minnesota had a lovely summer, but then decided to skip fall and move straight into winter – and it's about to get worse. 

According to AccuWeather, a ring of air usually reserved for the arctic circle, appropriately called the "polar vortex," is barreling south as we speak. It's expected to usher very cold air into the Upper Midwest Thursday-Friday this week, and again in the days leading up to Thanksgiving. 

Accuweather says high temps Thursday-Friday will be in the teens across northern Minnesota, with lows near zero. In and around the Twin Cities, lows will dip near 10 degrees with highs barely cracking 20 on Thursday before a slight warmup Friday. 

The National Weather Service is calling for a high of 20 in Duluth, but with blustery winds at 20 mph, the wind chill will feel more like 5 degrees. 

The cold vortex will then retreat before making a return trip somewhere in the Nov. 18-22 window, AccuWeather says. Thanksgiving is on Nov. 23, so you might escape the possibility of having to start your car 3 million hours before you leave just to warm it up. 

The strength of the polar vortex varies – but it can be incredibly fierce, like the ones that hit Minnesota in 2014, leading to the ninth coldest winter on record in the Twin Cities. 

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