SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – Happy Wednesday, Utah! Our next storm is upon us, and it’s ushered in windy conditions today with a wind advisory in effect for the western side of the state.
The bottom line? Another atmospheric river event brings rain and snow to Utah
Statewide blustery conditions are expected, but areas under the advisory are facing sustained winds between 25-35 mph with gusts up to 55 miles per hour possible. This southwest flow brings increased cloud cover and helped keep temperatures mild overnight and will boost daytime highs close to seasonal norms today. This is all ahead of our approaching storm, which is a strong upper-level low-pressure system that intensified pretty rapidly and is tapping into the atmospheric river moisture in the Pacific. This upper-level low is the driving factor of our weather story today.
As the cold front ahead of the low-pressure moves in, we’ll see wet weather spread across the state with mainly valley rain and mountain snow. The wet weather potential will run highest by the late afternoon through tomorrow night as the front moves from west to east. There is potential for thunderstorm development along the front, so eyes to the skies for the afternoon and evening.
Even after the cold front moves east of Utah by early Thursday, the main dynamics of the storm combined with lingering moisture will lead to more widespread wet weather potential through Thursday. Also, with colder air moving in, there will be a chance we could see times of valley rain and snow showers.
Heavy mountain snow is associated with these waves of moisture, and as a result, winter storm watches have been issued for the Northern and Southern mountains. Northern mountains are expecting 1-2′ of snow with the watch in effect from Wednesday evening until Friday evening. This will likely turn into a Winter Storm Warning.
The Winter Storm Watch for the southern mountains is in effect for a shorter time frame, Wednesday evening through Thursday evening, but calls for 8-16″ of snow near Brian Head and in the Tushar mountains. Additional winter weather alerts could be issued for other spots expecting accumulating snow like the Central Mountains and Wasatch Back, so stay tuned.
By Friday, wet weather looks to clear southern Utah, but another weak system moving through could result in the chance for additional showers in northern Utah through at least the first part of the day. There could be commute impacts early Friday, especially with mountain routes compromised. By Thursday and Friday, we’ll be looking at temperatures once again being roughly 10-15 degrees below average with mainly 30s and 40s for daytime highs for most across the state. It will once again feel more wintery as opposed to Spring!
Saturday will bring another brief break in our weather as temperatures begin to moderate. The calm conditions likely won’t last though because our next storm looks poised to move in by early next week starting first in northern Utah potentially late Sunday. Meanwhile, it should be a lovely weekend down south ahead of that wet weather likely arriving on Monday. Make sure to stay with us as this storm evolves.
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