Classic, Messy Montana Spring Storm: Another 10″ Snow With 60 MPH Winds
Some counties in southwest Montana could potentially be impassable through Wednesday evening. Not everybody is forecasted to get crazy weather, but up to a foot or more of snow might fall in some mountain ranges. Very strong winds are supposed to be widespread - gusts of 40+ MPH will be common and 70 MPH possible.
This is a tough storm system to predict and explain. Winter Storm Warnings and High Wind Warnings are plentiful across the region but they're definitely not identical warnings. Some areas may have to deal with dangerous amounts of heavy, wet snow while others may only witness the dangerous winds.
Spring storms with snow and typically warmer temperatures can wreak havoc on power lines and tree branches. Do not be surprised by power outages and consider keeping cell phones charged during this time period in case an outage happens. According to the National Weather Service:
- A WINTER STORM WATCH IN EFFECT FROM TUESDAY EVENING THROUGH LATE WEDNESDAY NIGHT.
- WHAT...Heavy snow possible. Total snow accumulations between 6 and 14 inches possible.
- Winds could gust as high as 45 mph.
- WHERE...Southern Rocky Mountain Front, Upper Blackfoot and MacDonald Pass, Little Belt, Highwood, Snowy, Judith, Big Belt, Bridger, Castle, Elkhorn, and Boulder Mountains.
- WHEN...From Tuesday evening through late Wednesday night.
- NOTE: South winds 35 to 45 mph, with gusts up to 70 mph, are expected for Gallatin and Madison County Mountains and the Centennial Mountains, Madison River Valley and Ruby Mountains and Southern Beaverhead Mountains from 9 PM Monday evening to Noon Tuesday.
- IMPACTS...Travel could be very difficult to impossible and tire chains may be required for some vehicles.
- Those in the backcountry should ensure they have appropriate knowledge and gear and may want to consider alternate plans.
- Gusty winds combined with the heavy, wet nature of the snow could cause
- damage to power lines, and possibly cause a few power outages.
- A Winter Storm Warning is in effect for Yellowstone National Park and the surrounding areas.
- WHAT...Heavy snow expected. Total snow accumulations of 10 to 18 inches, with higher amounts likely in the Tetons and southwest part of Yellowstone National Park.
- Sustained winds of 20 to 30 mph are expected to gusts to 40 mph at times.
- WHERE...Yellowstone National Park, Teton and Gros Ventre Mountains, and Salt River and Wyoming Ranges.
- WHEN...From 6 AM Tuesday to midnight Wednesday night.