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Snow likely to hit today

Meteorologists warned that mid-November's record highs and clear skies were an anomaly and wouldn't last. Judging by today's forecast, they were right. Dig out the gloves, hats, ice scrapers and shovels because the forecast calls for temperatures...

Meteorologists warned that mid-November's record highs and clear skies were an anomaly and wouldn't last.

Judging by today's forecast, they were right.

Dig out the gloves, hats, ice scrapers and shovels because the forecast calls for temperatures as low as 18 degrees, 43 mph winds and 1 to 3 inches of snow from an Alberta clipper that moved into the Northern Plains on Monday.

Area residents flocked to the Home Depot in Fargo to buy shovels, snow blowers, ice scrapers and even windshield wiper fluid in response to today's forecast, said assistant manger Ozzie Peraza.

"We saw a surge of people coming in," he said. "The store is prepared for this."

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Customers have been buying warm-weather gear at Scheels All Sports on 13th Avenue South in Fargo since temperatures began dropping, said assistant manager Jeff Johnson.

"People are stocking up on warm socks, warm gloves and ear muffs. A lot of people are shopping for gloves," Johnson said. "I think the people in this area are expecting (winter). They know it's coming. Now they're starting to stock up on the things they need."

WDAY Meteorologist John Wheeler said the temperature shift to produce snow will likely happen early this morning. He said up to 5 inches of snow could fall today, depending on the storm's strength and how soon temperatures fall below freezing.

Those elements coupled with a strong northern wind will make driving difficult in Fargo-Moorhead today, Wheeler said.

"Even with a couple of inches, (roads) will get icy and visibility will get cut," he said, adding that Fargo-Moorhead will see considerably less snow than the Grand Forks, N.D., area.

Parts of northeastern North Dakota - notably the Devils Lake area - braced for as many as 10 inches of snow Monday.

Warnings and advisories were posted for the state. The National Weather Service said totals Monday could range from 1 to 2 inches in the southwest.

High temperatures in Fargo-Moorhead hovered in the mid- to upper-30s on Monday, and .22 inch of rain was recorded as of 5 p.m., the National Weather Service in Grand Forks reported.

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No snowfall was recorded Monday because temperatures didn't drop below 32 degrees.

The storm comes on the heels of unseasonably warm weather. Some North Dakota cities set record highs on Friday, with temperatures exceeding 70 degrees in some areas. It was 62 degrees in Fargo-Moorhead on Friday, which broke a record of 61 set in 1905.

The weather service's five-day forecast calls for high temperatures in the mid- to upper-20s and a 30 percent chance of snow Thursday.

High temperatures won't top 32 degrees until the weekend.

With cooler temperatures forecast, snow from the Alberta clipper is likely to stick around, said weather service Meteorologist Vince Godon.

"Really, the big change comes when you can keep some (snow) on the ground," Godon said. "Temps will change - the highs and lows. Once that happens, you are never going to get those record highs anymore."

The Associated Press contributed to this story. Readers can reach Forum reporter Joe Whetham at (701) 241-5557

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