UPDATE: 18″ for Southern Montana, First Epic Pow, Brah?
We might have quite a mess on our hands...a Winter Storm Warning (that's the big deal one), is in effect for Gallatin and Madison Counties until Noon on Tuesday. Several inches of snow is expected in the valleys with up to 18" of snow to accumulate in the mountains.
Many other Southern Montana counties have Winter Weather Advisories or Winter Weather Watches...but the WARNING is the most 'serious' of the group issued by weather authorities.
Patience is going to be needed for this Winter Storm Warning. LOTS of newbies to the area and the powers that be seem quite sure we're gonna get messy around here. Most folks don't have their snow tires on yet (if they use them). Take it easy and SLOW DOWN.
The valleys are expecting anywhere from a couple of inches to 6" of snow but MORE CONCERNING is the wind...gusts up to 30 MPH are possible during this Warning. Visibility can drop to near zero in those conditions, even with just a couple inches of snow.
According to the National Weather Service for Madison and Gallatin Counties:
- WINTER STORM WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM MIDNIGHT SUNDAY TO NOON TUESDAY.
- WHAT IS EXPECTED WITH THIS WEATHER WARNING...Heavy snow expected. Total snow accumulations between 6 and 18 inches in the mountains.
- Lower elevations of Madison and Gallatin Counties can expect 3 to 6 inches.
- Lower elevations of western Beaverhead County can expect 1 to 3 inches.
- WHERE DOES THIS WEATHER WARNING AFFECT...Beaverhead, Gallatin and Madison Counties.
- WHEN...From Midnight tonight to Noon Tuesday.
- IMPACTS OF THIS WEATHER WARNING...Travel could be very difficult to impossible. Areas of blowing snow could significantly reduce visibility.
- WHAT IS THE WORST TIME FOR THIS WARNING: The hazardous conditions could impact the Monday morning and evening commutes.
- PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...If you must travel during very poor conditions, keep an emergency kit in your vehicle. SLOW DOWN and use your headlights at all times.
- The latest road conditions can be obtained by calling 5-1-1 or visiting the MDT Road Report website.
JEFFERSON COUNTY: Snow is expected along with very gusty winds. Visibility on the interstate and rural roads may be quite difficult at times. 3" to 5" of snow is possible with 30 MPH winds gusts expected.