SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) — Happy Wednesday, Utah! Our weather today won’t bring too many changes compared to what we’ve seen so far this week. An area of high pressure to our southeast continues to filter in moisture, and the southwesterly flow also keeps us warmer than average. This is a pattern that isn’t too dissimilar compared to monsoon season even though we’re still a couple of months away from that getting going.
The moisture combined with the instability from the warmth will be the main catalyst for showers and thunderstorms, but the difference today and tomorrow will be that low pressure will add a little more in the way of dynamics, so the chance for wet weather in the next couple of days will run just a little bit higher.
Through the afternoon, we’ll see isolated to scattered showers and thunderstorms across the Beehive State. The best chance for wet weather will be in the high country, but valley storms are possible, especially in southwestern and south-central Utah. Severe storms aren’t expected, but 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, we 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, 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. By tonight with the loss of daytime heating, the wet weather potential will go down, but a few passing showers will remain possible overnight as lows fall mainly into the 40s and 50s with some 60s down south.
For our Thursday, it’s rinse and repeat with our weather once again with temperatures that run 5-15 degrees above average with a chance for scattered showers and thunderstorms — the best chance coming in the afternoon and evening hours.
Wet weather potential will drop slightly to close out the workweek and move into the weekend. However, we won’t be able to eliminate the chance. By the end of the weekend into next week, the high pressure that will bring slightly calmer conditions will start to break down as another system approaches from the west. This could mean another bump in wet weather potential as we stay warm.
Warming temperatures this week mean that flood concerns continue with multiple flood watches and warnings. We currently have 4 flood warnings in effect. The warning for the Bear River in Rich County has been extended through next Friday. The flood warning for the Sevier River near Hatch and the flood warning for the South Fork of the Ogden River near Huntsville remain in effect until further notice. The newest flood warning is for the Strawberry River near the Strawberry Reservoir. That will be in effect through Thursday.
A Flood Advisory is in effect for Blacksmith Fork River near Hyrum affecting Cache County with the flow projected to stay above the action stage. The Bear River near Corrine is also under an advisory as farmland and roads see minor flooding near Corinne.
We also have a flood advisory in Eastern Utah for the Dolores River and the Colorado River near Cisco that’s causing some minor flooding in Grand County. Due to the flooding from Thistle Creek, there is now an advisory in place until Thursday afternoon. US-89 remains closed from Fairview to Thistle Junction near the US-6 interchange.
A new flood watch has been issued for Daniel’s Creek impacting portions of the Wasatch Back, Western Uinta’s, Wasatch Plateau, and Book Cliffs through Friday morning. We also have a flood watch for Little Bear River below the Hyrum Dam. A flood watch was also issued Monday for the Green River near Jensen in Uintah County.
For context, a flood warning means that flooding is either occurring now or is expected, an advisory means that either minor flooding is occurring or that the waterway is above the action stage with the potential for flooding, and a watch means that flooding is possible. Even for waterways not in alerts, they will continue to run high, fast, cold, and extremely dangerous as our snowpack melts and as water is released from reservoirs. Be sure to keep a safe distance from raging waters.
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