BOZEMAN – One of the wildest weather patterns we have seen in a long time continues to impact SW Montana today.
Record to near record highs on Saturday Feb. 1st with hurricane strength wind gusts to heavy snow on Feb. 2nd .
Here is a recap of the first weekend in February 2020.
High temperatures across Montana Saturday Feb. 1st were 20 to 40 degrees above normal. Lewistown hit 70° for the warmest high on Saturday and West Yellowstone was mild but only slightly above normal with 32°.
Locally, Bozeman Yellowstone Airport (Belgrade) hit 59° and that crushed the old record high of 52°. All other reporting stations in SW Montana fell just short of record levels by only a few degrees.
Numerous record highs were reported across Montana on Saturday both west and east of the divide. From Missoula to Billings temperatures hit the upper 50’s to lower 70’s.
A long duration wind event was one of the reasons for the well above normal Spring-like temperatures on Saturday. Strong wind gusts started to develop Friday afternoon and ramped up by Saturday.
Local peak gusts varied from 35 mph in Butte to almost 90 mph in Livingston. Most mountain passes reported peak wind gusts between 45 to 60 mph on Saturday.
A strong cold front hit Saturday evening and by Sunday morning widespread snow blankets SW Montana. Some of the heavier snow totals came in around Bozeman and Livingston with numerous reports of 7”-8” of new snow.
West of the divide near Anaconda there was a report of almost 5” of new snow.
From 2 pm Saturday to 2 pm Sunday a 24 hour change in temperatures across Montana was dramatic with most reporting stations 30° to 40° colder.
As of 2 pm Sunday afternoon areas of snow continue to impact SW Montana mostly along and South of I-90. Heavier snow bands will sit over the southern most areas of Beaverhead, Madison, and Gallatin counties but there is also snow between Bozeman and Billings Sunday afternoon.
An additional 1"-2" of snow is possible for Bozeman but West Yellowstone could see another 4"-6" by Monday morning and Red Lodge could see another foot of snow.
Winter Weather Advisories continue through midnight Sunday for Beaverhead, Madison and Gallatin counties. Travel impacts are likely through your Monday morning commute. Most roads have a thick layer of ice and ontop of the ice is a layer of snow. Roads are extremely icy.
Winter Storm Warnings are up across most of Wyoming now through Tuesday morning. The storm over Southern Montana is slowly digging down into Wyoming and Colorado. Travel south of Montana is not recommended.