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Winter storm brings joy and frustration as snow heads east

Jeff Swensen / Getty Images

Chandler Fescemeyer, 17, snowboards down the road after a winter storm blanketed the Midwest with snow on Dec. 26, in Pittsburgh, Penn. The storm has moved west from the Sierra Nevada across the Midwest and will head to the East Coast today.

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A cyclist rides his bike through a winter snowstorm on Dec. 26, in New York City. Snow, mixed with and changing to rain, is expected to hit the New York City area this afternoon into the evening.

Julio Cortez / AP

A person pushes a kart while salting the sidewalk at Military Park in downtown Newark, N.J., on Dec. 26. The National Weather Service forecast sustained winds of 15 to 20 mph along the coast in the afternoon, with gusts up to 40 mph. The storm is expected to dump a total of four to six inches on the area and also produce sleet and freezing rain. Other areas are expected to get between two and three inches of rain. A flood watch has been issued from Wednesday afternoon through Thursday morning.

Mike Lawrence / The Gleaner via AP

While blizzard conditions made travel difficult, (front to back) John Michael Randolph, 6 years-old, Brecken Randolph, 9 years-old, and Kristie Randolph took advantage of the snow to go sledding at Atkinson Park in Henderson, Ky., on Dec. 26.

Tracy Connor, NBC News -- A wicked winter storm was sweeping east across the United States Wednesday, creating a post-holiday travel nightmare with more than a foot of snow in some places and thousands of flights canceled or delayed.

"Blizzard warnings stretch for 730 continuous miles due to Winter Storm Euclid," The Weather Channel’s Tom Niziol reported.

The white-out came a day after a Christmas storm unleashed heavy snow, deadly winds and even some tornadoes on the nation’s midsection, killing at least three people.

As millions of Americans braced for snow, rain, ice or more twisters, some 1,657 flights had been canceled and 7,522 were delayed, according to the travel website FllightStats.com. The airports most affected included Indianapolis, Dallas/Fort Worth, Chicago O’Hare and Washington Dulles. Continue reading.

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Jeff Swensen / Getty Images

A pedestrian crosses the Smithfiled Street Bridge after a winter storm blanketed the Midwest with snow on Dec. 26, in Pittsburgh, Penn.

Justin Lane / EPA

Motorists make their way through snow fall and traffic along the Merritt Parkway as the first effects of a winter storm are felt in Norwalk, Conn., Dec. 26.

Julio Cortez / AP

Snow falls over Military Park in downtown Newark, N.J., on Dec. 26. The National Weather Service forecast predicts sustained winds of 15 to 20 mph along the coast in the afternoon, with gusts up to 40 mph.

Ice and snow changes our environment, as winter engulfs our world.

A powerful winter storm brought up to 18 inches of snow from western New York to Maine. Before slamming into the Northeast, the weather system pounded parts of Midwest and spawned tornados in the south. NBC's Mike Seidel reports.