It may be hard to reconcile snow on the ground while the leaves remain on the trees and the list of things to be done to prepare for real winter is still a mile long.

The extended forecast offers some hope.

After a still chilly outlook for the start of the week, with the National Weather Service in Duluth noting the potential for snowfall Tuesday morning, Oct. 15, there are warming temperatures anticipated later in the week.

Tuesday could follow the recent snow/rain mixture with cool temperatures and cloudy skies.

The forecast states rain showers are likely before 8 a.m. followed by rain and snow showers between 8-10 a.m. before continuing as rain as the day progresses. The high temperature Tuesday is still anticipated to be on the cool side, topping out in the low 40s. A light morning wind may give way to 20 mph gusts.

Overnight lows are anticipated to be about 34 degrees Monday night and 35 degrees Tuesday night, before dropping below freezing Wednesday.

But the light at the end of this cloudy, cool stretch is expected to arrive Thursday with sunny skies and a high near 53 degrees. According to the forecast, Thursday may be the only day with sunny skies as clouds return Friday and into the weekend when a chance for showers returns. On the plus side, temperatures Friday and Saturday should warm to nearly 60 degrees, just in time for the Great Pumpkin Festival at Gregory Park Oct. 19.

Snowstorm summary

For Minnesotans who were not interested in starting winter early, the snowfall dump in North Dakota before the storm system moved east was a bit of luck. It leaves the infamous Halloween blizzard of 1991 -- as the early massive snowfall -- still standing as a strong memory for many without making them mark an even earlier calendar date as a new marker.

For neighbors to the west, it may be a different story.

“A crippling blizzard impacted central and eastern North Dakota and the Red River Valley from Thursday October 10th to Saturday October 12th, 2019,” the National Weather Service in Grand Forks, North Dakota, reported in a storm summary. “The storm began with rain and drizzle, and this gradually transitioned to snow. Snow persisted for the longest over the Devils Lake basin, James River Valley, and portions of northeast North Dakota, where snowfall totals of up to 3 feet and drifts up to 5 feet were observed. Further east in the Red River Valley and northwest and west central Minnesota, a longer period of rain and wintry mix occurred with a slower transition to snowfall.”

Northwest and west central Minnesota received mostly rain and wintry mix with up to 4-6 inches of snow, Minnesota Public Radio reported, adding peak wind gusts reached 50-plus mph in many areas.

The NWS posted this summary of the blizzard’s impact:

Local Impacts:

  • Interstates 29 and 94 and U.S. Highway 2 closed in eastern North Dakota from October 11-12.

  • Widespread area school closures on Friday, Oct. 11.

  • Reports of many trees and branches downed from heavy snow load and strong wind gusts.

  • Multiple airline flight cancellations and some airports shut down.

  • Many stranded motorists. Cars stranded in snow and in flooded ditches.

  • Around 20,000 customers without power for NoDak Electric and around 1000 customers without power for Ottertail power as of noon Oct. 11.