WARMING AND DRYING TREND BEGINS SOON FOR MONTANA — BOZEMAN – A cool and unsettled weather pattern is sitting over Montana Sunday with a cold front passing through the state Saturday night and now a shallow upper-level trough over the region.
Cooler than normal temperatures are here for just another day or two and we continue to track scattered areas of rain and snow over SW Montana.
Above 7,000’ there is chance for several additional inches of snow Sunday night into Monday morning over SW Montana. Be prepared for cool and wet conditions in the backcountry.
This current system will exit the region Monday afternoon and with clearing skies look for frosty morning lows by Tuesday. A hard freeze is possible for higher elevations.
Beginning Wednesday a new high-pressure ridge will build over the western U.S. and with it a warmer than normal and dryer than normal pattern heading into next weekend.
The 6–10-day outlook from the Climate Prediction Center shows exactly that for the entire state of Montana.
SW Montana will also continue to see periods of thick smoke mostly from local fires. A weak west to NW flow aloft could pave the way for smoke to push into the Bozeman region from the Haystack Fire near Boulder. If the fire burns actively look for periods of thicker smoke. Dillon could also see periods of thick smoke mostly from the fires burning in the upper Big Hole region over the next couple of days.
The return of warm and dry weather will keep most local and regional wildfires burning and if we see increasing afternoon surface wind gusts look for more widespread smoke and haze to linger over the region.