Wet weather hits Utah ahead of New Year’s weekend

Weather

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4) – Happy Friday eve, Utah! We are closing in on the New Year’s Weekend, however, before we get there, we have more wet weather to deal with as our next winter storm will be moving in from this afternoon into Thursday night.

Outside of the chance for wet weather, it’s going to be a milder and breezy day across the state compared to what we saw Wednesday. Highs will reach the mid to upper 30s along the Wasatch Front, upper 20s and low 30s in mountain valleys, and mainly low to mid 40s in lower southern Utah. 

As we move through Thursday afternoon, the chance for wet weather will increase the state with the bulk of any wet weather being snow. It will start first in northern Utah as wet weather also spreads into southwestern Utah. It will start in the mountains, but by midday, we were already seeing steady snow in Cache Valley.

Along the Wasatch Front with our brief warm-up wet weather may start as a rain/snow mix before becoming all snow during the evening into Thursday night. Winter weather advisories are already in effect for our higher elevations, but they will begin for Cache Valley, Eastern Box Elder, and Bear Lake/Bear River Valley at 2 PM while the advisories for the Wasatch Front, central Utah from Nephi down to Beaver, and Cedar City will begin at 5 PM. In St. George and lower spots in southern Utah, rain is most likely with a small chance we could see a little mix late tonight into early tomorrow. 

With rain and snow spreading across the state into the evening, we are likely to see impacts on the roadways starting for the evening commute into tonight. Road conditions will worsen as we move through tonight as times of heavy snow will be possible, especially in the mountains and mountain valleys. As we move through Friday the chance for widespread rain and snow will begin to go down, but for mountains and valleys, mainly near the I-15 corridor, snow will remain a possibility.

Along the Wasatch Front snow will likely be aided by lake enhancement and lake effect snow will be possible Friday night into early Saturday. By New Year’s day in the afternoon, skies look to be dry across the state as high pressure settles in.

Through Friday night we can expect to see some healthy totals, especially in the mountains where 1-2 feet is likely with some spots getting closer to 30″! Mountain valleys will receive between 5-15″ with isolated spots seeing closer to 18″, northern valleys including the Wasatch Front will see 2-6″ with isolated up to 8″, benches will see 4-10″, and central and southern valleys will pick up 1-5″ with isolated up to 8″ as well. 

Another product of this storm will be some frigid temperatures. Highs tomorrow along the Wasatch Front will struggle to climb above freezing, but the real cold will arrive New Year’s Eve night as lows fall into the low and mid-teens along the Wasatch Front and even St. George will fall into the low and mid 20s.

We’ll see another daytime high on New Year’s day in the 20s for Salt Lake City, teens in Park City, and southern Utah will struggle to reach 35! Saturday night will be even colder, but we’ll see moderating temperatures to end the weekend and move into next week. Unfortunately, inversion haze will likely start building in our northern Utah Valleys. 

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