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Those Thanksgiving-wrecking winter storms sure look serious from space

Satellites are watching the bomb cyclone and other winter storms smack the US ahead of the holiday weekend.

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The US is somewhere under all that cloud cover.

NOAA

I'm expecting a couple extra guests for Thanksgiving this year. My local friends scrapped their travel plans when they looked at the coming snowfall totals for Thursday -- and that's just for New Mexico. Other parts of the US are in for bigger storms, and eyes up in space are tracking the action. 

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shared a satellite view on Wednesday of the developing storms, saying it shows how the weather will make "travel conditions difficult to impossible" for the Thanksgiving holiday.

NOAA noted how the East Coast storm may generate wind gusts severe enough to ground the famous floating balloons that star in Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City.

NOAA also shared a dramatic, swirling view of a bomb cyclone that formed off the West Coast on Tuesday. "Bomb cyclone" is the easier-to-say version of the weather term "bombogenesis," which essentially refers to a storm that rapidly intensifies over the course of 24 hours.

Storm systems aren't just striking the coasts. An intense band of weather dropped piles of snow on the Rockies. The Colorado Climate Center logged a storm total of 16.5 inches of snow in Fort Collins by Tuesday night, making it the third largest November storm total on record. 

"Widespread winter weather, flash flood and wind watches, warnings and advisories are currently in effect from the National Weather Service across large portions of the nation," the NWS reported in a forecast discussion on Wednesday. These stormy weather patterns are expected to stretch into the weekend. 

A lot of people may have to scrap their Thanksgiving travel plans. Wherever you end up, we've got some tips to help get you through the hectic holiday.

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