Although the upper midwest of the USA does have real winters, they are nothing in comparison to the winters of my youth in upstate New York, in particular the snow belt along the southeastern shore of Lake Ontario. Today there are all manner of dire predictions of 8-18 inches of snowfall during the next 24 hrs. But generally, in fact, mostly, the actual snowfalls are quite short of the mark. Apparently the weather people like scaring everyone into good behaviors and smart actions, although these SW to NE storm tracks are difficult to predict and if you are right in the path, you can get clobbered while an area only 50 miles away from the narrow storm track will only get a couple of inches. In upstate New York when they warned you about heavy snow (no one would notice just 6-8 inches more) you immediately ran out and bought beer, bread, peanut butter, ping pong balls, you know all the necessities so that you could survive if a big snow fall was realized. During the Phactor's freshman year in college on the shores of Lake Ontario an actual snowfall of 104 inches (+260 cm) was recorded in 48 hrs. We could toboggan out a 2nd story window, and it took a week to dig out. Good thing the lake was there so you had a place to put it all. And even more impressively, that is not the snowfall record for the state. A little town to the east, Red Creek perhaps, received 78" of snow in just 24 hrs. So no worries there except that anything more than 5-6 inches is more than they can deal with. When you have to tie a fishing pole to your car antenna and put a flag on it so people can see you coming up to an intersections, why then you've got some snow. The image is of a colleague's driveway.