Snow Ahead for the Mountains of the West
A slow moving storm system will bring significant snows to the mountains across most the West into this weekend. Nearly a foot of snow has fallen already in parts of Montana and much more is expected.
Winter Weather Alerts cover portions of 8 states across the West, mainly in the higher elevations. More than a foot of snow is likely to accumulation through Sunday in some of the major mountain ranges.
In the Sierra Nevada, snow will begin to increase later tonight and tomorrow. Above 7,000 feet, up to 2 feet may accumulate by Saturday, mainly on the west slopes and near Mt. Lassen. Snow levels will fall down to around 4,500 feet. The wind may gust to near 100 mph in the ridges, with 40 to 50 mph gusts possible in the lower terrain.
It has already been snowing across some of the mountains of Montana, Wyoming and Idaho. 20″ to 30″ may fall in the highest elevations, especially for the Beartooth and Absaroka Mountains and throughout the Tetons into Yellowstone National Park. Some wind gusts are likely to climb about 40 mph.
The Cascades will see significant snowfall, with 6″ to 12″ likely and snow levels falling to 3,500 feet.
A cold front is currently stretching out from the Pacific Northwest into the Pacific Ocean. Moisture funneling into the front from the Pacific and along the Jet Stream will aid in producing heavy snow. Snow will increase tonight across the Cascades, and Friday in the Tetons and Sierra Nevada.
The front will sag southward on Saturday and the snow will diminish, but a second low moving into the Pacific Northwest will bring another round of snow into the region on Sunday.
For WeatherNation: Meteorologist Mace Michaels