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A winter storm locking the U.S. in an unseasonable freeze has buried parts of Wisconsin in more than four feet of snow, meteorologists said Friday. The hamlet of Gile, which is located near the Michigan state line, has been walloped with a rare 48.3 inches in the past two days alone. "There were some pretty high totals up there but this area in particular is certainly an anomaly," said Michael Palmer, lead forecaster at The Weather Channel. "It's amazing. It's just amazing how much has come so fast," Gile resident Peg Sutherland told the St. Paul Pioneer Press.
While some snow was still falling in the Upper Midwest early Friday, for the most part it has now moved on to the eastern Great Lakes. Lake effect snow brought 12.6 inches to Erie, Pennsylvania, the most ever recorded this early in the season. Snow was forecast later Friday in parts of Ohio, western New York and Pennsylvania. A separate storm was also expected to continue to bring light snow to areas of the Pacific Northwest and northern Rockies. But for most Americans waking up Friday the main story was still the temperature. More than 70 percent of the nation has been gripped by the icy blanket, with temperatures in most places save southern Florida experiencing temperatures between 15 and 40 degrees lower than average.
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