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Chicago’s mild and snowless winter is definitely in the rearview mirror. Early Friday morning Chicago-area temperatures dropped to their lowest levels since late December as skies cleared over a fresh snow cover. Lows ranged from around zero well inland to the teens in the heat of the city. Brief, but intense snow showers followed Friday afternoon, bringing up to an inch of snow in many locations. Waiting in the wings is a fast-moving storm system, that could bring the season’s heaviest snowfall to northern portions of the Chicago area with more than 6 inches of snow possible near the Wisconsin state line, tapering off to as little as an inch far south towards Kankakee, where rain or freezing precipitation could mix with the snow. An extended period of cold weather will follow the storm with Chicago area temperatures not expected to top the freezing mark until well into February.