Summit County is squeezed between a winter storm warning to the west and Red Flag fire danger to the east. Click on the map for the full National Weather Service forecast, including the winter storm warning.
Winter storm warning to the west, Red Flag fire danger to the east; narrow avalanche escape on Peak One, with snow on the way
By Bob Berwyn
SUMMIT COUNTY — Winter may make an encore appearance in Summit County starting this afternoon as a blustery cold front is set to move through area, bringing a decent chance of snow showers the next few days.
The state advisory map looks pretty interesting today, with a Red Flag fire warning in effect for much of the eastern plains and a Winter Storm warning for the western mountains. Summit County sits in between, with most of the incoming storm’s energy focused to the south, west and northwest. The Steamboat and Grand Mesa areas have already picked up between 5 and 9 inches of snow.
For the Summit-Vail zone, the Colorado Avalanche Information Center is predicting 1 to 3 inches today, with similar amounts overnight and showers lingering into Friday. After a few days of near-record temperatures for the area, highs will crack the freezing mark early today before plummeting downward with arrival of the cold front. Overnight lows will be in the single digits, with highs on Friday only reaching between 15 and 20 degrees. In some locations, temperatures may drop below zero.
The avalanche center is reporting a close call on Peak One, above Frisco, where two skiers triggered a big wet snow slide on the east face, escaping by skiing to a safe zone. As forecast previously, the wet snow tore down into older unstable layers, resulting in a large slide. Read more about the Peak One slide here.
The avalanche danger is rated as moderate overall with pockets of high on north to east to south-facing slopes at higher elevations. New snow and winds gusting to 50 MPH the next few days could build tender new slabs on leeward slopes. Please check in with the CAIC online or call the local hotline at (970) 668-0600 to get the full forecast.
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