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Today’s record warmth turns into snow, high winds and below zero wind chills overnight

Published: Dec. 22, 2020 at 4:42 PM MST
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KEVN) - This forecast is textbook South Dakota weather. We had record high temperatures today in downtown Rapid City and out at the Rapid City Airport. Downtown reached 65°, which broke the previous record of 64° set back in 1933. The airport reached 66°, eclipsed the previous record of 64° set back in 1972. In a matter of hours, those record highs will turn into snow, high winds and below zero temperatures.

Hopefully you enjoyed the nice weather today, because a cold front has passed through the area. Very high winds, scattered snow showers and very cold air will be settling in tonight and into tomorrow.

There is a Winter Storm Warning in place for the northern and central Black Hills in South Dakota and the Wyoming Black hills. Locations within the warning include Lead, Deadwood, Brownsville, Cheyenne Crossing, Galena, Nemo, Hill City, Mt. Rushmore, Deerfield, Hisega, Mystic, Pactola Reservoir, Rochford, Rockerville, Sundance, Aladdin, Beulah and Four Corners. 3″-6″ of snow is expected for those spots, with isolated higher amounts possible. Winter businesses rejoice! Finally some white stuff to get things going on the slopes and trails.

There is a Winter Weather Advisory in place for Bennett County and areas to the east into central South Dakota. Parts of northeast Wyoming and the South Dakota plains could also pick up 1″-3″ of snow. Much of the snow in Wyoming will fall overnight tonight, while the snow on the South Dakota plains will fall tomorrow morning through midday. Strong winds overnight will create blowing and drifting snow, along with very low visibility, which will make driving overnight and tomorrow morning treacherous.

A High Wind Warning is in effect for much of western South Dakota and northeast Wyoming. The strongest wind gusts will be in northeast Wyoming this evening, and in western South Dakota overnight. Gusts up to 70 mph will be possible for some. Wind damage and power outages are possible with these strong winds. If you have any inflatable winter decorations, it might be best to bring those indoors overnight.

Cold air will be another factor behind the cold front. Temperatures in the morning will be in the teens for many. With gusts of 50+ mph, it’ll make temperatures feel below zero to begin the day! Textbook South Dakota going from a record high of 65° today (Tuesday), to feeling like below zero in a matter of 12 to 18 hours. It’ll stay windy Wednesday with gusts up to 55 mph and that’ll make it feel like the single digits to teens much of the day.

We’re warming up Christmas Eve as temperatures slide into the 40s, but it will remain breezy and feel a little cooler. Christmas Day is sunny with temperatures climbing back into the 50s! Not much wind to deal with either.

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