Another snow-producing storm, this one carrying cold temperatures from the Pacific Northwest, is expected to move into Southwest Colorado on New Year’s Eve and extend through New Year’s Day.
Megan Stackhouse, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Grand Junction, said the storm will be cold, with lows in Durango in the single digits for New Year’s Eve. The New Year’s Day low is forecast to sink to minus 1 degree, Stackhouse said.
Most of the snow will come Monday and Tuesday, though snow could start falling in Durango after 11 p.m. Sunday, Stackhouse said.
The northern San Juan Mountains began receiving snow from the system Sunday, and up to 8 inches accumulation are expected at higher mountain elevations.
In Durango and Pagosa Springs, Stackhouse said she expected about 4 inches accumulation by the time the storm moves out Tuesday.
A winter weather advisory, which means periods of heavy snow are probable and are likely to create travel difficulties, is in place from 6 p.m. Sunday until 9 a.m. Tuesday for the San Juan Mountains, including the towns of Hesperus, Silverton, Ouray, Telluride and Lake City. Besides the San Juan Mountains, the winter weather advisory is in effect for the Uncompahgre Plateau, the Dallas Divide, Grand Mesa, Battlement Mesa and the Sawatch Mountains.
Durango and lower elevations of Southwest Colorado are under a winter weather watch from Monday morning to Tuesday morning. A winter weather watch means conditions hold the potential for significant snow that could impact travel.
After the storm moves out, Stackhouse said the weather service expects sunny skies for the week through Jan. 6.
On Jan. 6 or perhaps Jan. 7, Stackhouse said a subtropical storm could move into Southwest Colorado. The storm could produce snow, but temperatures are likely to be warmer than the frosty New Year’s system.