Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Winter arrives in Minnesota, just a little too early October 21, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 5:00 AM
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AS I WRITE THIS EARLY Tuesday afternoon, snow falls, layering the landscape in Minnesota’s first measurable snowfall of the season. Several inches are expected in some areas, more in others. This marks an unusually early snow event.

A solo maple leaf stands upright in my snowy backyard.

Only yesterday I wrote of the winter ahead. I didn’t expect that to be the next day, but rather late November or early December. This is just a little too early for my liking.

I took this photo from my back door early Tuesday afternoon.

As I look outside, I observe a squirrel rooting around in my backyard, probably intent on finding a place to stash a walnut.

Next door, birds dine at my neighbor’s bird feeders near an almost naked maple tree.

Across the street, snow piles atop jack-o-lanterns on another neighbor’s front steps, reminding me of the 1991 Halloween blizzard of 20-plus inches of snow here in Minnesota.

Already a city plow truck has sprayed a mix of sand/salt/chemicals onto the street at the bottom of a steep hill.

Later a snowplow scrapes the snow from streets.

The first snow of the season always challenges drivers.

A half hour ago, a Fed Ex worker crossed the street after delivering a package to a neighbor. The young man wore shorts. In 32-degree temps with snow falling. Apparently he didn’t get the weather memo or he can tolerate cold.

My snowy Faribault, Minnesota, neighborhood.

All of this I observe from inside the warmth and comfort of my home with no reason to go outdoors. Earlier this morning, before the snow began, I hustled to haul flower pots, a water fountain and other garden art into the garage. Now I’m hoping I won’t need to head out later to shovel…because the snow shovels are still stored in the rafters.

What was I thinking? I am updating this at 8:44 pm Tuesday, 45 minutes after I finished 1.5 hours of snow removal. I estimate our snowfall at 6-8 inches. Heavy wet snow, the worst kind. Tuesday’s snowfall in Minnesota broke state records for the most snowfall this early in the season. Yup. I’m over winter already.

© Copyright 2020 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


20 Responses to “Winter arrives in Minnesota, just a little too early”

  1. Oh, Audrey!! This is awful! I do not miss the winters in the or shoveling snow. But your photos are pretty! Stay warm and safe Dear Friend!

  2. Sandra Van Erp Says:

    Yup, me too. We clocked in a little over 5″. Belinda promises after Thurs. rain, this will all be history. I drove a little midday, came home and rescheduled an afternoon appointment.

  3. Norma Says:

    All I can say is “WOW”. We’re hoping for cooling into the 70’s! If I had the proper clothing, I might think snow would be nice. Then again, maybe not. I only wish that we would be able to enjoy four seasons.

    • We’re all saying, “WOW!” Even we hardy Minnesotans. More snow is expected for the central part of the state tomorrow, I think. And then there’s a possibility of additional snow on Sunday. Your great grandchildren enjoyed playing in the snow yesterday. Izzy told her mom they were going outside right after breakfast today. I don’t know if that happened.

  4. valeriebollinger Says:

    Gary waited until this morning to blow out the driveway. Sigh. I’m not ready….

  5. Kathleen Ahern Says:

    Hi Audrey,

    We are twin weather-sisters, it seems! Here in the woods of northern Idaho, it’s snowing up a storm! We will likely get 2-3 inches and then rain is predicted, followed by more snow.
    We just had our snow tires put on this morning. I guess it’s all about timing! Haha!
    We are just getting ready to make a nice big pot of soup we can enjoy all week. I think that will be followed by a batch – or 2 – of cookies.
    Stay warm and safe, my friend!

  6. Well, you know what I think 🙂 Rochester did not get the accumulation that you and the cities got, I’m sure we only got about 4″, today 1/2 of that is gone. I’m going to have to agree with you… it came too soon but I’m sure it will go away before long and come later when It’s suppose to! ha ha! I hope you are staying warm my friend.

  7. Beth Ann Says:

    And here I was sending you beach pictures. I think my timing was off. I guess it is October in Minnesota, right? You are well equipped and there is something pretty about the first snow. It’s the 50th snow that gets tiresome. Stay warm !

  8. Christine Drawert Says:

    I flew into MN on Wednesday to enjoy the fall weather in Faribault. Oh what a cruel joke Mother Nature has played on me. I will enjoy the snow on the pumpkin anyway.

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