SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – Hey there Utah happy Wednesday we are halfway through the week, and we are quickly approaching the Christmas weekend. As we move towards Christmas we are going to see some big changes with our weather as a storm system approaches from the west.
We will see noticeable changes today, but nothing too drastic. Clouds will increase across the state leading to partly sunny to mostly cloudy skies through the afternoon. Temperatures will be like what we had yesterday with the 30s along the Wasatch Front and 40s by the time you get down south. In our northern Utah valleys, we’ll continue to deal with more inversion haze leading to poor air quality continuing, especially from the Salt Lake Valley northward through Cache Valley.
By tonight we’ll be looking at a blanket of clouds across the state as the chance for wet weather begins to increase. It will start with a slight chance for snow showers up in the mountains. Wet weather will spread across the state throughout the day tomorrow and that could lead to a bit of a mess. If moisture is able to move in quick enough we could find some snow along the Wasatch Front and depending on the condition a mix or even some freezing rain cannot be ruled out.
By tomorrow afternoon warmer air will be moving in which will raise the snow level to around 7000 ft. This means the bulk of the day tomorrow brings valley rain and mountain snow. Speaking of the mountains, significant snow totals will be possible starting tomorrow morning.
A Winter Storm Warning will go into effect for our northern Utah mountains southward through the Wasatch Plateau. The warning also includes the Wasatch Back so the Heber Valley and Ogden Valley will be within the warning. The warning continues through 5 a.m. on Christmas morning. Within the warning, 5-15″ of snow will be possible in the mountain valleys while 1-2 feet of snow will be possible in the mountains with the potential for even more in isolated spots, like the cottonwoods. This could make travel extremely dangerous, especially along the I-80 & I-84 corridors up to Wyoming.
Snow levels will be bouncing up and down starting tomorrow. Tomorrow afternoon will see the level be at 7000 ft, but as we cool off Thursday night it will drop to 5000ft before increasing to 5500-6000 ft. Friday afternoon. With that, if we see the rain be heavy enough, which is possible, snow levels may drop to valley floors in spots.
By Christmas Eve night into Christmas morning, the snow level likely drops to the valley floor before coming to near 5000ft. on Christmas day. Past that point, even colder air will be moving in and if it hasn’t already, the snow level will drop back to the valley floors for most by Christmas night into Sunday. Snow will be likely Sunday into early next week.
The takeaway? Today brings more clouds, but tomorrow brings a strong winter storm that could have a big impact on travel plans.
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