BOZEMAN – Be prepared for a wintry weather pattern this weekend with snow likely down in the valley floor and over mountain passes.
A cold front dropping in from the N-NE will impact Montana Friday afternoon through Saturday afternoon and another system will arrive Sunday.
There are two main concerns with this active pattern. First is strong surface winds Friday afternoon through Saturday morning. Second is rain changing to snow Friday night into Saturday morning.
The National Weather Service has a WIND ADVISORY up for the Butte/Blackfoot region through 9 pm Friday evening.
Sustained winds 20 to 30 mph and gusts 40 to 50 mph are possible. Wind prone areas could see stronger gusts and there will be crosswind areas producing difficult travel for high profile vehicles.
The National Weather Service issued a WIND ADVISORY for the Livingston area through 6 am Saturday morning.
Peak wind gusts up to 60 mph are possible and hazardous crosswinds on I-90 could shut the interstate down so plan on delays if traveling.
The National Weather Service has a WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY up from 3 am to midnight Saturday for Jefferson, Broadwater, Gallatin, and Meagher counties of SW Montana and up along the Rocky mountain front out to Lewistown.
Snow accumulations: Valleys 1”-3” and mountain passes up to 6”. These are general accumulations some valleys could see more than 3” and higher mountain peaks could see over 6” of snow.
Ahead of the cold front Friday evening rain is likely but as the cold front passes through overnight and colder air digs in watch for snow levels to drop down to the valley floor. Slushy accumulations are possible for lower valleys, but mountain passes could see wet, icy, and snow-covered road surfaces.
Another system will push in from the West Sunday into Monday keeping a chance for more off-and-on rain or snow across the state.
Temperatures next week will stay well below normal.