I-35 reopens after nightmare travel day in southern MN, Iowa - KMSP-TV

I-35 reopens after nightmare travel day in southern Minn., Iowa

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A lot of people are being forced to change their Christmas travel plans after the Midwest was hit with a major winter storm. The storm missed the Twin Cities metro for the most part, but more than a foot of snow fell on parts of Iowa, Wisconsin and Nebraska.

Anyone looking to drive to the south or east faced rough conditions and some road closures Thursday. Slick pavement, strong winds and whiteout visibility forced the Minnesota State Patrol to shut down Interstate 35 from Albert Lea to Iowa, stranding many drivers.

"We were hitting ice patches and sliding," said Susan Huber, who was driving on I-35. "The wind is strong enough that when I hit those patches, if there was a truck trying to pass me, that would pull me over and I could feel myself losing control of my car."

I-35 was reopened by Friday morning. MnDOT says driving conditions in southeastern Minnesota are fair.

Thousands of flights across the country were canceled or delayed because of the storm. The bulk of those are at Chicago's O'Hare and Midway airports, but it's causing a ripple effect of back-ups and headaches at the Minneapolis airport.

Many airlines are waiving fees for some travelers who want to change their plans.

Tens of thousands of people lost power in the storm, and the Iowa National Guard had to rescue stranded drivers

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