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Chilling beauty

The weather was so cold, sun dogs were visible near Big Ole in Alexandria. (Photo taken January 9, 2015 by James Feist, Explore Minnesota Tourism)1 / 4
Family and friends embrace a winter day near Lowry. (Contributed by Jodi Brecht Blair)2 / 4
Taking photos like this one of snowflakes by Penny Mounsdon calls for the right type of snow and a macro lens. 3 / 4
Snowy, frost-filled trees line this snow-covered road. (Contributed by Penny Mounsdon)4 / 4

The recent cold snap is a wintry delight for shutterbugs.

One good thing about the brutally cold weather: It creates the perfect canvas to showcase the beauty of the outdoors.

From sunlight dancing off ice-covered tree branches, to bright sun dogs cutting through the haze of a wintry sky, to snowflakes crystallizing into intricate icy patterns, Mother Nature has been putting on quite a show in the last few days.

Temperatures plunged to 11 below on Saturday, 14 degrees colder than the normal low. Sunday was even colder, dropping to 18 below.

Sunday was the coldest day Douglas County has shivered through since Feb. 22, 2015 when the low fell to 20 below.

Another wind chill advisory was issued for late Monday night into Tuesday morning. A wind chill factor of 34 below was in the forecast.

Still, we’ve had a fairly mild winter so far. Since November, it’s only dropped below zero five times.

Last year, temperatures dropped below zero three times in November, four times in December and 10 times in January – and that was only through January 12.

A little bit of warmth is headed our way. The forecast calls for temperatures to get into the mid-20s on Thursday. But another cold front is expected to settle in through the weekend with high temperatures hovering around zero.

Al Edenloff

Al Edenloff is the news and opinion page editor for the Echo Press. He was born in Alexandria and lived most of his childhood in Parkers Prairie. He graduated with honors from Moorhead State University with a degree in mass communications, print journalism. He interned at the Echo Press in the summer of 1983 and was hired a year later as a sports reporter. He also worked as a news reporter/photographer. Al is a four-time winner of the Minnesota Newspaper Association's Herman Roe Award, which honors excellence in editorial writing.  

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