PIERRE, S.D. — People in the Upper Midwest and Rockies woke up to frigid temperatures Tuesday and heavy snow blanketed some areas.

Other parts of the Midwest and East are expecting a dose of the icy weather later this week from a powerful storm that hit Alaska with hurricane-force winds last weekend.

More than 2 feet of snow blanketed parts of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, and more was on the way before the front was expected to exit Wednesday. Northern Wisconsin also got as much as 18 inches of snow, and parts of central Minnesota more than 16.

The weather wasn’t enough to persuade Joe Meath to flee Minnesota, even though he won nearly $12 million in a state lottery game two months ago. Meath was busy with his small snowplow business, taking care of his customers in his Chevy truck with 300,000 miles on it.

“I don’t know what I’d be doing if I wasn’t doing this today,” Meath told KMSP-TV.

In Colorado, some residents were shoveling out from under tumbleweeds rather than snow. Winds of up to 60 mph caused tumbleweeds to pile up several feet high in and around Colorado Springs and Pueblo.

The National Weather Service called for snow to taper Wednesday, except for more lake-effect snow mostly over Michigan.

Unseasonable cold was far more widespread, with the cold air in the Rockies and Midwest spilling into the Pacific Northwest. The chill was aiming for the Appalachians and mid-South by Wednesday morning and the East Coast by Thursday.

In the Texas Panhandle temperatures plunged, from 70 degrees into the teens overnight. Oklahoma City went from a high of 80 degrees Monday to a low of 30 Tuesday morning.

In the Dakotas, wind chills made it feel like 20 below in some places.

In Denver, temperatures in the teens prompted officials to move a Veteran’s Day ceremony indoors.

With only a few inches of snow, ranchers in the Dakotas were upbeat, mindful of intense storms in October 2013 that killed at least 43,000 cattle that hadn’t yet developed protective winter coats.

“We’ve had enough cool weather (this year) that they’re haired up like bears,” said South Dakota Stockgrowers Association President Bob Fortune, who ranches near Belvidere. “They can take winter now.”

Meteorologists are adamant the weather isn’t because of the polar vortex, a giant upper air pattern that normally pens in cold air in the Arctic in the winter. Instead, they say it’s pushed in by a different weather phenomenon more related to the remnants of a powerful typhoon.

Whatever the case, the cold is expected to linger.

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