Ah, spring is just a few days away, but winter has at least one more punch to land on the chin of the Twin Cities and surrounding communities in what has already been an unforgivably frigid and snowy season.

Snowfall ranging from 4 to 8 inches is being forecast for east-central Minnesota and into western Wisconsin, with the precipitation starting before dawn Tuesday and stretching into early Wednesday, according to the National Weather Service (NWS).

The wet stuff is forecast to start as a mix of rain, sleet and snow before turning to exclusively snow in time for the Tuesday afternoon commute, the NWS added.

A key factor in just how much snow will fall will be the temperatures, which are forecast to crawl above freezing each of the next few days, only to drift a few degrees below during the next two nights.

Meanwhile, as a warm-up, sleet and freezing rain is moving through central Minnesota, including the Twin Cities metro, area Monday morning, causing icy roads, the weather service said. The precipitation, which will last until about noon in Minnesota, will turn to mostly snow as it moves into Wisconsin.

For the record, spring arrives Thursday at 11:57 a.m. CDT. Caution: Its arrival is no guarantee of springlike performance.