A Significant Storm Will Impact Travel–Winter Storm Warning Issued

4/11/22 Monday 5 am

I mentioned last week that gardeners who have recently located to our area need to show some restraint this time of year when it comes to planting. On Wednesday and Thursday mornings, we are going to have a hard, vegetation-killing freeze for all locations across the forecast area. Temps in the lower elevations could approach 20 degrees or lower by Thursday morning. Mid to upper teens will be possible in the mid-elevation areas with single digits in the higher elevations. A freeze warning has not yet been issued, that will happen sometime tomorrow.

For today, expect temperatures to rebound slightly but gusty southwest winds will make it difficult to enjoy it. You may want to look in your backyard this morning and decide if there is anything you don’t want to blow away. Usually, the winds die down at night, that will not be the case tonight.

Late tonight through Tuesday a very cold tightly compacted storm will bring snow, high winds, and the possibility of snow squalls. Blizzard-like conditions will cause whiteout conditions and severely impact travel across the higher elevations areas. Wind gusts over the passes may reach 60 to 70 mph making. When combined with the heavy snow travel may be impossible.

The high temperatures will be reached early on Tuesday and snow levels may drop to 6,000 feet or lower by Tuesday afternoon. At the moment I expect the worst of the storm will be over by late Tuesday afternoon. The exception may be the passes where lighter snow may continue on and of until Thursday.

Here is the Winter Storm Warning as written.

URGENT – WINTER WEATHER MESSAGE
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE GRAND JUNCTION CO
240 AM MDT MON APR 11 2022

COZ004-009-010-012-013-017>019-120000-
/O.UPG.KGJT.WS.A.0006.220412T0000Z-220413T1800Z/
/O.NEW.KGJT.WS.W.0006.220412T0000Z-220413T1800Z/
ELKHEAD AND PARK MOUNTAINS-GRAND AND BATTLEMENT MESAS- GORE AND ELK MOUNTAINS/CENTRAL MOUNTAIN VALLEYS-WEST ELK AND SAWATCH MOUNTAINS-FLAT TOPS-
UNCOMPAHGRE PLATEAU AND DALLAS DIVIDE-
NORTHWEST SAN JUAN MOUNTAINS-SOUTHWEST SAN JUAN MOUNTAINS-INCLUDING THE CITIES OF COLUMBINE, HAHNS PEAK, TOPONAS, ASPEN,VAIL, SNOWMASS, CRESTED BUTTE, TAYLOR PARK, MARBLE, BUFORD, TRAPPERS LAKE, RIDGWAY, GLADE PARK, TELLURIDE, OURAY, LAKE CITY,
SILVERTON, RICO, AND HESPERUS
240 AM MDT MON APR 11 2022

…WINTER STORM WARNING IN EFFECT FROM 6 PM THIS EVENING TO NOON MDT WEDNESDAY…

* WHAT…HEAVY SNOW EXPECTED. TOTAL SNOW ACCUMULATIONS OF 6 TO 15 INCHES. LOCALLY HIGHER AMOUNTS POSSIBLE ABOVE 9,000 FEET. WINDS GUSTING AS HIGH AS 60 MPH.

* WHERE…PORTIONS OF NORTHWEST, SOUTHWEST AND WEST CENTRAL COLORADO.

* WHEN…FROM 6 PM THIS EVENING TO NOON MDT WEDNESDAY.

* IMPACTS…TRAVEL COULD BE VERY DIFFICULT DUE TO NEAR BLIZZARD CONDITIONS IN BLOWING AND DRIFTING SNOW, ESPECIALLY ON RIDGE TOPS AND MOUNTAIN PASSES. ICY AND SNOW-PACKED ROADS ARE LIKELY. STRONG WINDS COULD CAUSE TREE DAMAGE.

After I post this, I will also be sending out an update on the severe weather event that will be developing in the Midwest on Tuesday. I have had several questions about it. Later today I will share the latest model runs and try to determine who is going to get snow and how much.

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