BOZEMAN – The weather outlook is likely to be very active Friday through most of next week. Plan on periods of valley rain or snow with heavy mountain snow and difficult travel conditions with a series of Pacific storms and a blast of Arctic air.
The next weather maker is dropping in from British Columbia, Canada. This system first impacts northern Idaho and NW Montana Thursday night into Friday morning and continues to drop to the SE impacting SW Montana Friday afternoon through Saturday morning.
Arctic air will begin do dig southward into Montana by Sunday night and produce well below normal temperatures next week with some of you falling slightly below zero for morning lows. There will be moisture with this cold push of air so snow is also possible next week.
There are a wide range of winter weather highlights issued across the region.
The National Weather Service issued a WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY for NW Montana from midnight Thursday to noon Friday. This includes I-90 Missoula to Lookout Pass. 3”-8” of snow is possible above 5,000’ with wind gusts to 30 mph.
The National Weather Service issued a WINTER STORM WARNING from noon Friday to noon Saturday for the Bitterroot Range above 5,000’ with 6”-12” of snow possible and 1’-2’ for the highest peaks along with wind gusts to 50 mph. Lolo Pass and Lost Trail Pass are included in the warning area.
The National Weather Service issued a WINTER STORM WARNING for Yellowstone National Park from 6 pm Friday to 9 pm Saturday. 10”-16” of mountain snow is possible over the southern end of the park with 3”- 6” in the Lamar Valley and Mammoth areas. Wind gusts up to or over 50 mph are likely and will produce considerable areas of blowing snow.
The National Weather Service issued a HIGH WIND WATCH for the Butte/Blackfoot region Saturday morning into Saturday evening. SW wind 30 to 40 mph with peak gusts up to 60 mph are possible for lower valleys and in higher elevations gusts over 60 mph are possible.
The National Weather Service issued a HIGH WIND WATCH Friday night through Saturday night for SW Montana east of the divide. SW wind 30 to 50 mph and gusts up to or over 60 mph are possible.
The National Weather Service issued a WIND ADVISORY for the Livingston area from noon Friday through 6 pm Saturday. Gusts over 60 mph are possible in the Livingston area and hazardous crosswind gusts for I-90.