Extreme winds continue this weekend; expect mountain snow

Posted at 9:43 AM, Jan 03, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-03 11:43:48-05

This weekend will feature periodic snow along the Divide with a Winter Weather Advisory in place for the Northern Rocky Mtn. Front until 5 p.m. Sunday. Here we could see 5"-10" of snow with gusts up to 60mph for places like Marias Pass (a foot plus in the higher terrain of Glacier National Park).

The bigger weather story will be the extremely gusty winds.

High Wind Warnings cover all of north central and central Montana through Sunday evening with the period of strongest wind gusts expected during the overnight hours Saturday through Sunday afternoon. Gusts could easily approach 60-75mph with isolated gusts approaching 100mph in wind prone areas along the immediate eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountain Front.

Travel will likely become very difficult in the area covered by the High Wind Warning (lighter gold); especially for high profile vehicles or those pulling trailers. Hazardous travel will also be possible due to blowing dust which could significantly reduce visibility. Areas that have not seen appreciable precipitation over the past month are most at risk of seeing reduced visibility due to blowing dust.

As far as temperatures go, highs are expected to run about 10-20 degrees above average this weekend topping out in the 40s to even low 50s.

A few passing weather systems are expected to impact our region next week with minimal impacts, otherwise, expect a mix of clouds and sun with highs in the upper 30s to upper 40s.