Vortex junior: Frigid air brings new wind chill advisories, warnings

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Remember the days – probably not so long ago – when you'd never heard a certain phrase that rhymes with solar Gore-Tex?

Well, it seems that unwelcome term has crept back into Minnesota's weather picture. A cold front arrived in the state Monday, and a West Central Tribune report calls it another polar vortex.

Temperatures this time around will not be as frigid as those of our early January blast, nor will this episode be as long-lasting. But wind chill readings of more than 30 below mean vortex junior is not to be taken lightly.

Much of the state Tuesday morning was shivering under wind chill readings from minus 25 to minus 40 degrees. WCCO forecasts a Twin Cities high of 1 below zero on Tuesday, followed by highs of 3 degrees on both Wednesday and Thursday. FOX 9 has a shade more optimism, calling for highs of 1 above, 6, and 2.

The National Weather Service has put the whole state under a wind chill advisory through noon Tuesday. Northern and west-central counties are under a wind chill warning.

Even though the wind chill advisory is set to expire at noon Tuesday, Wednesday is no trip to the beach, with a low of minus 13 in the Twin Cities Wednesday night.

Things won't really warm up until about Friday, when it could hit 30 in the metro, and blessed "moderation" arrives, as MPR News puts it.

Light snow and flurries are possible Tuesday night into Wednesday morning, to go with an inch or 2 that fell in western Minnesota and the Dakotas on Monday.

A quick glimpse around the state:

Ely – Tuesday: High -2, low -11, with 1-2 inches of snow tonight. Wednesday: high -1, low -24.

Hallock – Tuesday: High 2, low -8, daytime snow 1-2 inches. Wednesday: high -7, low -25.

Pipestone – Tuesday: High 6, low 4. Wednesday: High 4, low -18.

Rochester – Tuesday: High 0, low -3. Wednesday: High 6, low -13.

The Associated Press reports the cold front is settling in across a swath of the northern U.S. that extends east all the way to New England. Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine have joined Minnesota with wind chill warnings in effect.

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