Wet Weather System Moves Into Western Montana – Cold Front Follows
The National Weather Service is reporting that a a very moist system is headed toward the Missoula and western Montana area.
Meteorologist Trent Smith said October has been extraordinarily dry and warm, but it will end with heavy rain.
"There's a very moist plume headed into the northern Rockies," Smith said. "The National Weather Service is anticipating that some of the mountain areas along the Montana - Idaho border could receive anywhere from six to eight inches of rain. That's rain, not snow. This is a very warm system that will make snow levels rise."
Smith said there are potential dangers involved with the heavy amount of rain.
"Our biggest concern is the potential for rock and mud slides across the area, especially in Mineral, Clearwater and Idaho counties. It's a big change, we're going from dry warm conditions to heavy rain. Even here in Missoula, we could see upwards of a half-inch to an inch of rain by Sunday morning."
Smith said the moist weather will be followed by a much colder system.
"We're looking at a very deep, cold trough setting up over the northern Rockies, causing our snow level to crash all the way down to the valley floors so that by Monday or Tuesday, a few areas could actually see snow, even in Kalispell, Missoula and in Butte. Temperatures will be cold. with locations along the divide that could only see highs around 32 degrees by Tuesday."
Smith said mountain passes could also see several inches of snow on Monday and Tuesday.