SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – Happy Thursday, Utah!

We have changes on deck for the state as an organized cold front takes aim at Utah on Thursday. The front will open the door for significantly cooler air to move into the state, so temperatures will run about 10 degrees cooler in northern Utah, but it won’t be until Friday where the cool air is felt down south.

Temperatures will come down considerably once the cold front moves through. Temperatures warm up before the front comes through, so expect 60s and 70s in the Northern half of the state, while the heat hangs on in the southern half with 90s expected in St. George and plenty of 80s in Central and Southern Utah. Highs on Friday will only manage the upper 50s and low 60s along the Wasatch Front while the highs come back down to the low 80s in St. George.

Friday and Saturday morning will be quite chilly for this time of year. Areas of patchy frost will be possible along the Wasatch Front both Friday and Saturday night. For Bear Lake and Bear River Valley, the Wasatch Back, and the Sanpete Valley, a Hard Freeze Watch is in effect for both nights as well as lows could dip as low as 25 degrees so protect any sensitive plants.

In the northern half of the state from late Thursday into Friday, there will be wet weather potential with a slight chance of an isolated shower/storm on Thursday afternoon and evening into Friday morning. Precipitation is not the biggest strong point with this system — the cooler air tops the chart as the weather headline. We can’t rule out a few isolated afternoon showers and this possibility holds on through Friday. 

This front is also triggering strong, gusty winds in the southern half of the state. Gusty, westerly winds will blow dust and could impact travel with crosswinds and limit visibility at times. We’ll see widespread gusts over 30 mph tomorrow, with gusts up to 50 mph where wind advisories are posted for areas including Utah Valley, Castle Country, the Uinta Basin, near Moab and around Flaming Gorge. Stronger winds could deliver gusts over 60 mph in SW Wyoming and in the Uinta Basin, where a High Wind Warning kicks off Thursday morning and holds through the night.

The increased winds combined with low humidity and dry conditions will result in a critical fire risk for all of southernmost Utah. A Red Flag Warning is posted for parts of Washington County, near Kanab, Lake Powell, and near Hanksville that will begin on Thursday and last for parts of Southern Utah into Friday. Avoid outdoor burning for the next couple of days if you can. 

Bottom line? A day of weather changes with a cold front, whipping winds, fire danger and the chance of some wet weather!

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