BOZEMAN – Get ready for some serious winter weather to impact Montana beginning Wednesday. A long duration snow event is likely to impact western, central, southwestern, and southern counties of Montana.
Snow could be heavy at times Thursday! This will have a major impact on traveling both in town and over highways and mountain passes.
Temperatures will climb ahead of this storm Wednesday but will drop sharply as the storm digs deeper into Montana Wednesday through Friday and this means snow is likely at all levels and wet roads will turn icy. There will be areas of localized gusty winds producing blowing snow and lower visibility.
It’s very early for forecasting snow totals. Most models are pushing possible snow totals up to or over 10” to 12” for most (not all) valleys in SW Montana and possibly 1’ to 2’+ over most mountains and passes Wednesday through Sunday.
Now is the time to prepare for possible heavy snow impacts. This storm will have a major impact on travel, newborn livestock, and could increase avalanche danger in the backcountry.
You need to pay close attention to the latest forecasts to help you make wise decisions on how to stay safe during a high impact event.
WINTER STORM WATCH
The National Weather Service has issued a WINTER STORM WATCH from Wednesday afternoon through Thursday night.
Forecast conditions look favorable for heavy snow. Early estimates of total snowfall are 6”-12” between 4,000’ to 7,000’. 1’ to 2’ of snow is possible above 7,000’
Wind gusts up to 40 mph are possible.
Impacts: Travel will be difficult and hazardous at times. Areas of blowing snow will produce a significant reduction in visibility.
This winter storm watch does not include: Great Falls, Townsend, or Dillon. The watch will be upgraded to either a winter weather advisory or a winter storm warning as it approaches and forecast models have a better handle on timing and intensity. Look for updates on the KBZK STORMTracker Weather Mobile app.
THE NEXT NEXT WEATHER MAKER
Hold on we are not done yet. Friday night through Sunday another storm will drop down into Montana with more snow and colder temperatures this weekend. It’s way too early to get specific on timing and intensity but please be aware of more active weather is coming this weekend.