BILLINGS — On Monday, the first day of New Year's week, Billings woke up to a beautiful blue sky. However, it was a little on the cool side. The low this morning in Billings was 14 degrees, and it's at least warmed up to 33 degrees with a southwest wind at 21 mph in the afternoon.
Around the rest of the state, temperatures were mostly into the teens, 20s and some low 30s out west, and mostly 30s east of the Divide, except for Glasgow, where it was 19 degrees.
On the threat board, we are starting to see that fill in. First, we have a High Wind Watch from Absarokee and Big Timber to Harlowton from Tuesday night to Wednesday night for 60 mile-per-hour winds.
That watch continues up the eastern slopes of the divide to where we see 60 mile-per-hour winds from Great Falls all away up into Canada. Plus, we have a High Wind Warning on the Rocky Mountains front for 60 mile-per-hour winds.
We could see some snow up there as well, anywhere from 2 to 5 inches in the valleys to 6 to 12 inches in the mountains.
In addition, the Winter Storm Watch that was in effect for western Montana has now been changed to a Winter Weather Advisory. Now we expect 3 to 6 inches of snow in the valleys and 8 to 16 inches up in the mountains all underneath a glaze of ice.
Along western Montana, we could see anywhere from 1 to 4 inches of snow in the valleys to up to 16 inches of snow up in the mountains. This goes all the way down the Yellowstone National Park. The Beartooth Mountains could see 9 to 15 inches of snow.
By now the Doppler radar and satellite imagery shows a few scattered high clouds rolling in western Montana. It is basically clear everywhere else in the state.
But our High-Resolution forecast model shows the next system is starting to move into western Montana Monday night. It probably will push its way into southwestern Montana by early Tuesday morning.
Tuesday night around midnight, you'll just start to see it make its way into south-central Montana. The rest of Wednesday morning, the storm will move out and you will be looking at mostly sunny skies in the afternoon on New Year's Day.
Our afternoon high temperatures are expected to get into the 40s and stay there right on through Saturday.
TONIGHT: Mostly clear, breezy and cool. Southwest winds 15 to 25 mph. Low 22 degrees.
TUESDAY: Mostly sunny, breezy and a little but warmer. Southwest winds 15 to 25 mph high 41 degrees.
WEDNESDAY: Mostly cloudy with a 20% chance for rain and snow in the morning then mostly sunny skies in the afternoon with a chance for more rain later that evening. Southwest winds 15 to 30 mph. High 47 degrees.