Snow on track to return Friday evening

Published: Dec. 29, 2022 at 7:22 PM MST
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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KJCT) - A Winter Storm Watch issued for parts of Western and Southwestern Colorado will likely be upgraded on Friday to either a Winter Storm Warning or a Winter Weather Advisory.

Winter Storm Watch

A Winter Storm Watch is in effect from midnight Friday night until 2 PM Monday afternoon for portions of Western and Southwestern Colorado. Areas included are the Grand Mesa, Battlement Mesa, the Gore Mountains, the Elk Mountains, the Sawatch Mountains, the Uncompahgre Plateau, the northwest and southwest San Juan Mountains, the Dallas Divide, and Colorado National Monument.

This the cities of Aspen, Vail, Snowmass, Crested Butte, Taylor Park, Marble, Ridgeway, Glade Park, Telluride, Ouray, Lake City, Silverton, Rico, and Hesperus. Heavy, wind blown snow is expected. Snow accumulation of 1 to 2 feet with locally higher amounts is expected. Wind gusts of 40 mph will blow around the snow, decreasing visibility and making travel dangerous or even impossible at times.

Some Snow Tonight

Snow will sweep from Utah into the Four Corners area after about 10 PM tonight. Snow will increase over Southwest Colorado from Nucla to Dove Creek to Cortez and then exit to the east before the Friday morning drive. Accumulation of 1-3 inches is expected with locally higher amounts possible, especially on the windward sides of the mountains. The rest of the Western Slope, including areas around Grand Junction, Delta, and Montrose, will likely not see significant snow tonight, though a brief flurry cannot be ruled out.

More Widespread Snow Starts Friday Night

Our next big snow maker is a mid-to-upper level low pressure wave that will track across Western Colorado Friday night. Snow will begin increasing after 7 PM. Snow may break at times after about 10 AM Saturday, but another approaching storm system will bring more snow later Saturday and Saturday night. That later snow will likely change to rain in the valleys and help to wash away any previous snow accumulation. Valley rain and mountain snow will fall throughout much of Sunday. Rain will change to snow in the valleys Sunday night and fall through Monday. Monday night offers a break before another disturbance brings another round of snow next Tuesday.

Snow Accumulation Forecast

Snow accumulation of up 4-6 inches is possible through next Tuesday along Highway 50 from Grand Junction to Montrose. Some local variation higher or lower than that range is possible. Higher elevations could get between a foot and two feet of snow, including on the Grand Mesa. Again, some local variation of exact amounts is possible.

Our Next 24 Hours

Tonight will be mostly cloudy. Snow is likely from Nucla to Cortez between about 10 PM and 6 AM. The rest of us will be limited to a brief flurry, if anything at all. Low temperatures by morning will be near 21 degrees around Grand Junction, 19 degrees around Montrose, 18 degrees around Delta, and 15 degrees around Cortez. Friday will be mainly cloudy with a small chance for snow during the day. High temperatures will be near 34 degrees around Grand Junction, 35 degrees around Montrose, 34 degrees around Delta, and 33 degrees around Cortez. Snow will increase after 7 PM, and it will become widespread overnight through early Saturday.