Black Hills forecast Discussion: Clipper system prompts winter weather bulletins

A strong cold front is expected to push into the area late this afternoon and evening through Thursday, bringing high winds, cold temperatures and blowing snow to portions of our area

RAPID CITY, S.D. -A potent, short lived clipper system is expected to move through the Black Hills Wednesday evening through Thursday morning.

  • Quickly accumulating snow
  • High winds, leading to possible blowing snow
  • Temperatures dropping quickly, sub-zero wind chill

You can track the snow using our interactive radar.

Click here to see the interactive radar.

Here are some easy ways to keep track of inclement weather as it moves through the area:

📸 Have weather photos? Share them here.

Let’s break down the different elements:

Picture 1

  • Varying snow amounts are expected across northeastern Wyoming and southeastern Montana, with generally lower amounts in the plains and higher amounts as you approach the foothills of the Bighorns and the Black Hills.
  • Winds could gust up to 35-40 MPH in the plains, leading to blowing and drifting snow.

Picture 1

  • As of 5 PM, areas north and northeast of the Black Hills have been added to the list of winter weather advisories
  • several inches of snow will be possible, along with 50 MPH wind gusts.
  • The biggest impact will be the possibility of blowing snow across these exposed areas of NW South Dakota.

Picture 3

  • Butte County and Northern Lawrence County, including Spearfish and Belle Fourche could see several inches of snow and 50 MPH wind gusts.
  • Blowing and drifting snow could be an issue, along with quickly dropping temperatures.
  • Highway 85 North of Spearfish and Highway 212 in Butte, Crook and Carter County could be particularly difficult Wednesday night into Thursday morning.

Picture 2

  • The Winter Weather Advisory stretches south along the I-90 corridor, including Whitewood, Sturgis, Piedmont and Summerset.
  • 1″-4″ of snow, along with 50 MPH wind gusts will be possible. This could lead to periods of blowing snow.
  • Areas outside the protection of the hogbacks may see wind gusts pushing higher… such as Box Elder and areas east of Sturgis along highway 34.
  • Rapid City is close enough to the action that residents should use caution when venturing out tonight and tomorrow morning. Check road conditions.

Picture 4

  • The Northern Hills are under a winter storm warning, given the possibility of 6″ or more of snow being possible in certain locations.
  • Areas of southwestern Lawrence County have the highest probability of seeing snow totals that exceed 6″.
  • 40 MPH wind gusts will also be an issue for encouraging blowing snow in portions of area.

Picture 2

  • A Wind Advisory has been posted by the National Weather Service in anticipation of particularly high wind gusts Thursday east of the Black Hills.
  • Although consequential snow accumulations are not expected in this area, use your best judgement when heading out the door Thursday morning, particularly those in western Meade County.

Futurecast 1

  • Pockets of snow bursts will move through fast and furious, with intermittent pockets of snow heckling portions of the Black Hills while leaving other areas dry.
  • The difference of only a mile could separate a few flurries from a particularly intense snow band. Use caution if you need to travel.

Futurecast 2

  • By 10 AM Thursday, large portions of our area are expecting breezy to windy conditions out of the northwest. Wind chill factors will drop below zero in most cases.
  • Dress warm, with layers if you plan on going anywhere Wednesday evening through Friday morning.

Futurecast 3

  • Temperatures will struggle to reach the teens Thursday morning, especially if several inches of snow have fallen in your area.
  • Through Thursday, temperatures will continue to drop into the single digits and negatives going into Thursday evening and Friday morning.


It’s clipper season – these tend to be fast moving, cold, windy, dry systems that strafe the Black Hills in a 6-12 hour period and then hurry its way somewhere else. If you must travel, just be sure to have a winter kit with you and have a way to receive updates. This will be a fast moving, and fast evolving storm over the next 12 hours. We’ll be sure to provide updates as they become available. To stay up-to-date with weather changes, you can also download the NC1 Weather app in either the Apple Store or the Google Play Store.

We appreciate you trusting our team with your forecast. Stay Safe.

-NC1 Weather team



Categories: Local News