Posted: Oct 22, 2012 7:38 PM by Dennis Bragg - MTN News
Updated: Oct 22, 2012 7:54 PM
MISSOULA- Montana's rapid transition from a dry, hot fall to winter picked up the pace Monday afternoon as the first winter storm of the season pushed across the Northern Rockies.
Snow showers developed over central Idaho by mid-day, and snow began to fall in the Bitterroot Range by early in the afternoon. From there, snow pushed into Western Montana, generating steady snow at the higher elevations and sprinkling the Missoula and Bitterroot valleys with large, wet flakes.
Snow then moved north into the Mission and Flathead Valleys and was falling steadily just before dark.
Snow is forecast to continue right through the night, mainly in Northwest Montana. The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm warning through Tuesday at noon, with 5-to-12" of snow expected above 4,000 feet and 3-7" of snow below 2,000'. The exception is in the lowest valley elevations, where a winter weather advisory is posted for 1-to-2" of snow in the Missoula and Bitterroot
Valleys, with up to 3" in some of the foothill areas above the valley floors.
The snow is expected to continue through the Tuesday morning commute, making driving hazardous in some areas. The mountain passes, Lolo, Lost Trail, Lookout, Marias, Rogers and MacDonald already had snow covered roads and are expected to be very slick through the morning hours.
The snow should transition to mixed rain and snow for the valleys Tuesday as temperatures climb back into the upper 30s and low 40s.
Browse cameras from around the state! Includes 9 Montana Television Network Cameras as well as over 25 other cameras from around the state. Stay up to date with the current weather and highway conditions before you get on the road with STORMTracker TravelWatch Cameras.