BILLINGS- The Big Sky is filled with smoke on this Monday afternoon. However, the temperatures are much cooler, thanks to a weak cold front that moved through this past weekend.
The smoke continues to be a big problem around the state due to a southwesterly flow of air in the atmosphere.
The big news today is that the temperatures are much cooler than what they were this weekend even though it is very smoky.
The early afternoon temperatures were only into the 70s and low 80s across the state.
We did have a small shortwave weather disturbance Monday morning in eastern Montana, which has all but left the state and moved into the Dakotas.
The reason it left the state so quickly is that the jet stream is out of the southwest moving northeast in the upper levels.
At the same time, the low-level winds are out of the northeast. This takes the smoke that blew in yesterday with the cold front and puts it right back in your face today.
Plus, this gives us a pretty strong wind shear from the low to upper levels.
This means any storm that gets going off the Beartooth Mountains could grow rapidly to a strong thunderstorm size.
The high resolution forecast shows that scenario happening about 10:30 p.m. Monday. The storms will be just south of Yellowstone County in eastern Carbon and western Big Horn counties.
Then they will track across the state line with Wyoming all the way into South Dakota.
After that a few lingering showers are expected in South central Montana about 6 p.m. Tuesday.
Even though our temperatures will not be in the hundred degrees range for the rest of the week, we are getting into the low 90s on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
TONIGHT: Partly cloudy with a chance for evening showers and thunderstorms. Then expect scattered showers overnight with areas of smoke. Northeast winds 5 to 15 mph. Low 57 degrees.
TUESDAY: Mostly sunny with a 20 percent chance for isolated showers and thunderstorms with areas of smoke. East winds 5 to 15 mph. High 81 degrees.
WEDNESDAY: Mostly sunny and warmer with areas of smoke. West winds 5 to 15 mph. High 91 degrees.