Share

Western Storm: Snow for Rockies, High Winds for Southwest

Nick Wiltgen and Chris Dolce
Published: October 10, 2013

A potent storm system slammed into the coast of California on Wednesday.

Snow was reported in the Sierra Nevada of California and in the mountains of Southern California. Some lower elevation locations in Southern California, including Los Angeles and San Diego, received light rainfall from the storm.

(MORE: Minor Flooding in S. Calif.)

Farther to the east, the storm caused gusty winds in the Southwest, which contributed to blowing dust in Arizona.

(MORE: Blowing Dust in Arizona)

Thursday, the storm will spread snow and wind across the Rockies.

Rockies Snow, Wind

Background

Winter Alerts

Winter Alerts

Winter Alerts

Winter Alerts
Background

Snowfall Forecast

Snowfall Forecast

Snowfall Forecast

Snowfall Forecast

As the storm makes a hard left turn and swings northeast toward the Rockies, it will bring snow to higher mountain elevations of Utah, northern Arizona, far northern New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming, southern Montana and eastern Idaho.

Low pressure will then intensify over the Plains and track roughly from eastern Colorado northeast through the Dakotas. While this storm track is very similar to Winter Storm Atlas, this system will not draw down as much cold air from Canada.

As a result, snow will have a difficult time reaching the lower elevations (say, below 6,000 feet) east of the Rockies. Places such as Casper, Wyo., and Rapid City, S.D., which saw crippling snowfall during Atlas, will likely see mainly rain from this storm system.

The rain, falling on areas that saw up to 5 feet of snow from Atlas, could potentially lead to some minor flooding problems in eastern Wyoming, western South Dakota and southwest Dakota.

(MORE: Flood Alerts)

Despite the lower threat of wintry weather for many, winds will still be a factor due to the strength of the low-pressure system. 

Thursday afternoon, strong winds will spread from the Four Corners of northeast Arizona and New Mexico into the High Plains of eastern Colorado, western Kansas, southwest Nebraska, and the Texas and Oklahoma Panhandles, with gusts from 40-50 mph likely. Areas of blowing dust and reduced visibilities are likely in these areas, as well.

(WIND ALERTS:  Southwest | Plains)

Severe Threat

In addition to the threat of rain, mountain snow, and gusty winds, there will likely be some severe thunderstorms on the High Plains Thursday. For more details on this threat, click the link below.

(MORE: Severe Weather Threat Thursday)

MORE: Winter Storm Atlas Photos

iWitness Guzva84 captured this photo of mailboxes encased in snow in Spearfish, SD.

  • Winter Storm Atlas Snow Reports
  • Copper Mountain, Colo.
  • Copper Mountain, Colo.
  • Copper Mountain, Colo.
  • Copper Mountain, Colo.
  • Copper Mountain, Colo.
  • Frisco, Colo.
  • Frisco, Colo.
  • Mount Hood, Ore.
  • Mount Hood, Ore.
  • Wamsutter, Wyo.
  • Wamsutter, Wyo.
  • Wamsutter, Wyo.
  • Wamsutter, Wyo.
  • Wamsutter, Wyo.
  • Wamsutter, Wyo.
  • Casper, Wyo.
  • Casper, Wyo.
  • Gillette, Wyo.
  • Casper, Wyo.
  • Rapid City, S.D.
  • Wheatland, Wyo.
  • Wheatland, Wyo.
  • Steamboat Springs, Colo.
  • Casper, Wyo.
  • Casper, Wyo.
  • Casper, Wyo.
  • Casper, Wyo.
  • Casper, Wyo.
  • Casper, Wyo.
  • Casper, Wyo.
  • Spearfish, S.D.
  • Casper, Wyo.
  • Casper, Wyo.
  • Casper, Wyo.
  • Casper, Wyo.
  • Laramie, Wyo.
  • Casper, Wyo.
  • Casper, Wyo.
  • Casper, Wyo.
  • Laramie, Wyo.
  • Laramie, Wyo.
  • Laramie, Wyo.

 


Featured Blogs

Which Hurricane Model Should You Trust?

By Dr. Jeff Masters
August 21, 2014

In 2013 the official NHC forecast for Atlantic storms was better than any individual computer models at most forecast time periods, although NOAA's HWRF model did slightly better than the NHC official forecast for 5-day forecasts. Once again, the European Center (ECMWF) and GFS models were the top performers, when summing up all track forecasts made for all Atlantic named storms.

July 2014 Global Weather Extremes Summary

By Christopher C. Burt
August 19, 2014

July was the 4th warmest such since 1880 according to NOAA and the 11th warmest according to NASA data (the difference in assessments is due to several factors which I’ll discuss in a future blog). It was unusually cool in the central portion of the U.S. while record warmth was observed in parts of the U.S. Northwest, Scandinavia and the Baltic nations. Several powerful typhoons made landfall in East Asia and Hurricane Arthur took a swipe at North Carolina.

Live Blog: Tracking Hurricane Arthur as it Approaches North Carolina Coast

By Shaun Tanner
July 3, 2014

This is a live blog set up to provide the latest coverage on Hurricane Arthur as it threatens the North Carolina Coast. Check back often to see what the latest is with Arthur. The most recent updates are at the top.

Tropical Terminology

By Stu Ostro
June 30, 2014

Here is some basic, fundamental terminology related to tropical cyclones. Rather than a comprehensive and/or technical glossary, this represents the essence of the meaning & importance of some key, frequently used terms.

2013-14 - An Interesting Winter From A to Z

By Tom Niziol
May 15, 2014

It was a very interesting winter across a good part of the nation from the Rockies through the Plains to the Northeast. Let's break down the most significant winter storms on a month by month basis.

What the 5th IPCC Assessment Doesn't Include

By Angela Fritz
September 27, 2013

Melting permafrost has the potential to release an additional 1.5 trillion tons of carbon into the atmosphere, and could increase our global average temperature by 1.5°F in addition to our day-to-day human emissions. However, this effect is not included in the IPCC report issued Friday morning, which means the estimates of how Earth's climate will change are likely on the conservative side.