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Shower chances persist this work week

Sunday, June 4, 2023

Mostly cloudy skies and cool temperatures in the mid-sixties are over the town of Steamboat Springs on this Sunday mid-afternoon. The chance of afternoon and evening showers looks to persist through Thursday, with the best chance on Wednesday, as temperatures warm toward seventy degrees ahead of another storm system approaching our area. There may be several degrees of cooling on Thursday, but likely drying for the end of the work week.

A ridge of high pressure anchored over the central U.S. and extending toward the Arctic Circle is flanked by low pressure areas over the Great Basin and the Gulf of Maine. The ridge of high pressure is holding firm thanks to the building heat of summer and is slowly deflecting any storm systems moving eastward from the Pacific to our north. The end result is a relatively stagnant pattern that has been drawing moisture from the Gulf of Mexico over our area in the counterclockwise flow around the low pressure area.

Another incoming low pressure area is forecast to cross Baja tomorrow, and force the current low pressure area in the Great Basin northward as it slowly moves into Arizona through midweek. The southeast winds ahead of the new low pressure area will continue to move moisture from the Gulf of Mexico over our area for a continued chance of afternoon and evening thunderstorms. But because the center of the low pressure will be to out west, we should see some partly sunny starts to the day and high temperatures closer to our average of 72 F.

By Thursday, the low pressure area is forecast to move northward into Nevada thanks to a storm currently near the Aleutian Islands that will elongate to the south as it moves east into the Gulf of Alaska. Drier air wrapping around the now-in-Nevada low pressure area from the southwest will move toward our area, but weather forecast models disagree on how much of that drier air moves overhead by Thursday, and possibly heading into the weekend.

But with morning sun comes a better chance of stronger afternoon and evening storms as rising temperatures cook the atmosphere. The storms will likely become more scattered, but that won’t make a difference if you happen to be under a passing storm cell later in the day.

I’ll be back a bit earlier on Thursday morning, as I have more travel in my future, with a look at what is currently looking like a drier weekend forecast.

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7 July 2020

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