SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – Happy weekend, Utah! It’s still crazy hazy in parts of the state and that’s due to wildfire smoke! The smoke has been ushered in from Canada, where fires continue to burn thanks to a northeasterly flow in the upper levels of the atmosphere. We can expect air quality to remain in the moderate air category for most counties, with Salt Lake and Davis Counties. Weather wise, it’s going to be another warm one, and the chance for wet weather overall will run lower, but won’t go away completely. 

As for today, the best chance for wet weather will be in the high country and in the eastern and southern portions of the state. While severe storms aren’t expected, the thunderstorms today will be capable of producing brief, heavy rain, gusty winds, small hail, thunder and lightning. While we love to get out and enjoy our Utah terrain, you must exercise caution with these storms. If you’re headed to any of the Mighty 5, or any of the popular recreational areas in southern Utah, it’s important to note that while flash flooding is not probable, it’s possible. Please note that slot canyons are a particularly dangerous place to be this time of year with any threat of storms in the forecast. 

Temperatures also won’t see many changes compared to recent days as most across the state climb to the 70s and 80s while the Wasatch Back gets 60s and 70s. St. George and lower Washington County will lead the way with highs reaching the low 90s. Wet weather potential will drop tonight with the loss of daytime heating, but a few passing showers in southern Utah will remain possible through the overnight.

For the weekend, it looks to be a tale of two different states. In northern Utah, the chance of any wet weather will remain low, thanks to high pressure trying to keep things quiet as temperatures increase a bit. A few storms in the high country both days look possible, with a slim chance down in our valleys. In southern Utah, it will be a little different story as lingering energy and moisture will lead to isolated/scattered showers and thunderstorms both days, as temperatures remain consistent. It will be roughly a 1/3 chance in the lower elevations with a 2/3 chance in the higher terrain areas. Also, tomorrow will bring a marginal risk of excessive rainfall that could lead to flash flooding for most of south-central and southeastern Utah. If you have any recreation plans, especially hikes that involve slot canyons, have multiple ways to receive warnings and have a plan.

By the early half of next week, we’ll start to see more unsettled weather across the state as we move back into a more active pattern, with temperatures continuing to run roughly 5-15 degrees above seasonal norms. Stay tuned!