Caution! Winter is coming
The trees are bare, snow is in the forecast, and people who have experienced North Dakota winters are pulling out their sweaters and winter wear from storage; however, there are many people on campus who are weary of the changing weather because the current temperatures are lower than what they are used to even during the coldest months at home, but winter veterans are eager to share that there is nothing to worry about, even after last year’s extra-snowy winter.
“It certainly felt like it (the snowfall) was way above average due to several blizzards and the fact that we got so much all at once,” KX News’s meteorologist Amber Wheeler commented. “Minot’s average snowfall is 46.1 inches, though I have other sources that range from 46-49 inches. Last winter, Minot got roughly 63 inches. November and December went on record as the snowiest November-December combination ever.”
Lynae Dobbins, a junior from southern California, had some issues driving in all the snow, but she assured students there is nothing to worry about.
“I learned that people in Minot are very nice when my car got stuck in the snow and, two seconds later, three cars pulled over and pulled me out. It was very sweet and impressed me a lot,” Dobbins said.
Michael Witham, a senior from Texas, will experience his third winter and, overall, still enjoys the season. He likes the snow — something he did not experience often at home — and even appreciates the colder weather. He also believes successful winters require being prepared.
“Buy a really good coat; buy gloves if you’re going to be outside — like really good ones, not dollar store ones — and shoes that grip well on ice and snow,” Witham said before mentioning the dangers of ice. “You slip all the time if you’re not paying attention. I think the worst was when I slipped three times. Every time I got up, I would just fall back down. That’s the worst of it.”
Eric Grund, Scheels winter sport fitness manager, encourages people to utilize layers to keep warm.
“If you’re just going to wear a simple one-layer jacket and you’re going to be outside for any period of time, you’re going to be cold. Having something on the outside that’s waterproof to keep out the elements is key as well, and cover your ears because you want as little exposed skin as possible,” Grund said.
According to Wheeler, the current prediction is that there will be another La Nina winter, which is below average temperatures, but she wants new students to enjoy it.
“To students who may be here for the first time and will be experiencing their first North Dakota Winter, I say embrace it,” Wheeler said. “It's cold for sure. You won't be able to spend a ton of time outside, but you should embrace it. Heed all warnings and dress appropriately. If you've never driven on snow or ice, drive with extreme caution, slowly and with a ton of space between you and the car in front of you. If you don't feel comfortable driving, don't.”