Forecasts coming together for some Friday night snow in the Colorado mountains
By Summit Voice
FRISCO — A Pacific storm moving inland late in the week could give parts of the Colorado high country a taste of winter, with widespread precipitation expected Friday night and Saturday morning, according to the National Weather Service. Snow levels could drop to near 8,000 feet, giving the valley floors their first dusting of the season.
For now, the southwestern mountains look favored with this pattern, especially during the early part of the storm, but the forecast track takes the system right over Colorado, and with a strong jet stream in the area helping to stir up the atmosphere, most mountain areas should see some precipitation, with the northern and central mountains (including Summit County) favored by the wrap-around flow as the storm passes through.
But before the storm moves in, expect a few more days of warm and sunny weather, as the counter-clockwise flow around the approaching storm pumps warm air from the southwest into the region. Highs Wednesday and Thursday will climb into the high 50s, a few degrees above average for this time of year, and increasing high clouds will temper radiational cooling, keeping nighttime lows on the mild side.
The Pacific storm system is just starting to move inland and looks to be near Las Vegas Thursday night, then moving into Utah by Friday, when the San Juans could see significant precipitation, potentially starting with a round of thunderstorms. Snow levels will start high, at about 11,000 feet, but lower throughout Friday night, down to about 8,000 feet by Saturday morning.
The storm is expected to clear out quickly Saturday afternoon and evening, with a dry-ish northwesterly flow returning for the second half of the weekend and early next week, when temps should climb back to near average, which would be in the low to mid-50s.