Posted: Oct 17, 2012 1:53 PM by Meteorologist Mike Heard
An active weather pattern will continue heading into this weekend and for the first half of next week.
A new storm system will move into British Columbia, Canada beginning Thursday and lift up and over a High pressure ridge over the great basin. This storm will drop down into Montana beginning Friday and colder air will move in behind the storm this weekend with much cooler temperatures by Monday.
A cold front will push through the state setting up another strong wind event Friday afternoon through Sunday morning. Wind gusts between 55 and 65 mph are possible in wind prone areas and peak wind gusts up to 75 mph are possible in high wind prone areas along the rocky mountain front.
This storm system should produce more rain as warm air moves ahead of the system Friday into Saturday, however, rain could change to snow by the end of the weekend into early next week. Forecast computer models differ greatly on the amount of snow accumulations so confidence is low right now. The worst case scenario is several inches of valley snow and 6" to 12" over the mountains. It's too early to predict the snow event so for now be prepared for a possible wintry storm with travel hazards late this weekend into early next week.
Hunting season begins this weekend so those of you venturing out in the backcountry should be prepared for a wide variety of weather conditions.
I'll have an updated forecast for you tonight at 5:30pm and 10pm.