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More gorgeous fall weather precedes wintry weather around next weekend

Sunday, October 4, 2020

The temperature has already hit 67 F early this Sunday afternoon in Steamboat Springs under sunny skies. More gorgeous fall weather is forecast for the work week before a strong storm brings precipitation and much colder temperatures to our area around next Sunday.

A storm currently moving across the Pacific Northwest has temporarily flattened a ridge of high pressure over the west. Before that storm grazes our area late tonight and Monday, temperatures will warm to the low seventies, almost ten degrees above our average of 64 F.

There has been some clearing of the smoke from the Middle Fork fire that was more concentrated over our area on Saturday, thanks to some increasing winds from the west, but the NOAA Smoke Plume Model also predicts these winds will move a batch of smoke from fires in the Uinta mountain range in eastern Utah over our area tonight. Though the model has the smoke clearing by sunrise, we’ll see if local wind patterns keep that smoke around longer than the model predicts.

Breezy westerly winds turning to northwesterly will be with us on Monday as that grazing storm passes by, and we should see temperatures dip a few degrees from today, closer towards average, under continued sunny skies.

The western ridge of high pressure will rebuild behind the grazing storm, keeping our sunny skies around and allowing temperatures once again to rise into the seventies on Tuesday.

Enjoy this gorgeous fall weather for most of the rest of the week as a jolting pattern change is in our future. A strong storm is forecast to move across the northern Pacific through the work week and affect our area around next weekend. Current timing brings the bulk of the storm through our area next Sunday, though the details and timing will likely change as the storm approaches.

In fact, there is weather forecast model uncertainty as to whether there is a leading part of the storm which moves over later Saturday or is absorbed into the main storm on Sunday. And while it currently appears we will receive a good dose of much needed precipitation, with snow at the higher elevations, it is not clear if most of that precipitation will fall as rain in the Yampa Valley before turning to snow later in the storm.

But by Monday, the weather forecast models agree that the precipitation will turn far more showery behind the storm with a cold and raw day likely. And though there is a lot of weather to get through between now and then, longer-range forecasts call for drying by Tuesday with warming temperatures later in the day, with dry and warmer weather continuing past midweek. Stay tuned to my next regularly scheduled weather narrative on Thursday afternoon for more details on this end-of-weekend storm.

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