OGALLALA - A long duration winter event bearing down on a large portion of Nebraska is making dreams of a white Christmas come true. 

The National Weather Service issued a blizzard warning for much of central and eastern Nebraska, including Cherry, Keith, Lincoln and Chase Counties. The warning is in effect from 11 p.m. MST Sunday through 5 a.m. Wednesday. 

"The entire low pressure center doesn't exit the area until Wednesday," WeatherEye Meteorologist Mandy Thalhuber said. "Monday night into Tuesday, we will see some wrap around snow showers, and breezy winds continuing. There will be a large time gap in between these two rounds. Just the winds will stick around during that time."

The weather service office in North Platte anticipates 12-20 inches of snow across far north central Nebraska with northwest winds gusting at 45 to 55 mph. The rest of the warned area could see widespread amounts of six or more inches. 

Dangerous to impossible travel conditions are expected in the coming days, according to the NWS, with persistent strong winds causing reduced visibilities, and blowing and drifting snow.

"Folks traveling for the holidays should consider the forecast and consider alternate plans if their plans involve travel at all in the coming days but particularly Monday and Tuesday," the weather service in North Platte said in a statement released Sunday morning. "Blizzard conditions are expected Monday through Wednesday." 

A blizzard warning is issued when weather conditions include sustained or gusty winds of 35 mph or more, with falling or blowing snow, and visibility is at or below 1/4 mile; lasting for at least three hours.

A winter weather advisory remains in effect through Sunday for much of the Sandhills and portions of southwest and north central Nebraska, including Cheyenne, Deuel, Garden, Logan and Sedgwick Counties. 

One to four inches of total snow accumulation was expected in the first round of the Christmas winter storm. Northwest winds up to 45 mph was producing blowing and drifting snow. 

Temperatures will remain in the upper 20s to lower 30s through the event. Low temps will drop into the upper teens.

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ROAD CONDITIONS