BILLINGS — On Friday afternoon in the Big Sky, the temperatures are comfortable, the fall foliage looks beautiful, and it's all about to change. A very strong cold front is due to move in overnight and start the beginning of a very snowy weekend.
However, it's mostly cloudy and 52 in the afternoon with a southwest wind at 17 mph. Around the rest of the state, our current temps are mostly into the 30s, 40s, 50s and even one place, Livingston, is at 60 degrees.
We do have this to talk about: A Winter Weather Advisory for the Rocky Mountain front and the Snowy Mountains. Down in Yellowstone National Park, we could see 1 to 6 inches of snow through 6 p.m. Saturday.
Plus, we could see 1 to 4 inches of snow in the northeast corner of the state, by 6 a.m. Saturday. Plus, we still have a High Wind Warning for those same areas for winds gusting to 60 mph tonight and into Saturday morning.
We also have a Wind Advisory for the Beartooth foothills and west-central Montana. We could see winds from 45 to 60 mph in the advisory areas.
Right now, the Doppler radar shows a pretty strong northwesterly flow of air. Caught up in it is scattered light rain showers and snow up in the northeast corner of the state.
Our high-resolution forecast model shows we will be in and out of the showers Friday evening.
However, it really isn’t until after 3 a.m. that we start to see the rain change over to snow in the Billings area, and then that snow will stick around off and on through Saturday and Sunday.
How much snow will we get? Our computer models seem to be showing anywhere from 3 to 7 inches of snow through Monday morning. We like to pick the one in the middle and that's the GFS, which shows 6 inches of snow.
It will be 59 degrees at 5:30 p.m. Friday, and then cool down into the 30s in the morning. The temps will hover right around 30 degrees at noon.
We will top out at 32 on Saturday, 33 on Sunday and back of the 51 degrees on Wednesday and down to 38 degrees on Thursday.
TONIGHT: Mostly cloudy with an 80% chance for evening rain showers then rain overnight. Snow after 3 AM is expected with little or no accumulation. Northwest winds 15 to 25 mph. Low 29 degrees.
SATURDAY: Mostly cloudy and much colder with a 90% chance for snow. Accumulations of 2 inches is expected. Northeast winds 10 to 20 mph. High 32 degrees.
SUNDAY: Mostly cloudy with a 50% chance for snow with some additional accumulation. East winds 5 to 15 mph. High 33 degrees.