BILLINGS — A few cloudy skies, but certainly cooler temperatures are on the menu for Billings Monday afternoon. At 2 p.m. it was 64 degrees in Billings with a northwest wind at 15 mph.
That northwesterly wind is helping to blow some of the smoke away from the city Monday. Around the rest of the state, the temps are mostly into the 50s and 60s out west and central Montana, and we see a few 70s up in the northeast corner of the state.
The heaviest smoke continues to drop a little bit farther south and to the east, taking it away from much of Montana.
However, we do have a Red Flag Warning that begins at noon on Tuesday for much of eastern Montana and sticks around until 6 p.m. on Wednesday for the west and until midnight for south-central and eastern Montana.
An approaching cold front and high-pressure cell will kick up the winds, creating low humidity and warmer temperatures. All these will come together to create erratic fire behavior and possibly even new wildfire starts.
Right now, the Doppler radar shows a few scattered light rain showers. They're mostly moving away from Montana and heading into Wyoming Monday afternoon.
The high-resolution forecast model shows those showers continue to fade away. High pressure and that new cold front will move into the state on Tuesday, creating gusty winds and helping to warm things up.
Eventually, as that high-pressure cell tracks across the southern part of the state, it'll help push that cold front back up into Canada and only the Hi-Line will see cloudy skies on Wednesday.
Our temperatures Monday night will cool back down to the 40s and 50s across south-central and eastern Montana. On Tuesday, we get back up into the 70s and low to mid 80s with a Red Flag Warning.
However, Monday night we will wind up with 69 degrees at 5:30 p.m. cooling back down into the 50s in the morning and back up to 75 degrees about 1:30 p.m. Tuesday.
We will top out at 82 degrees on Tuesday, back up to 90 on Wednesday, and we will roller coaster between the 70s and 90s for the rest of the week until Sunday, when we cool back down to 67.
TONIGHT: Partly cloudy and continued cool. West winds 5 to 15 mph. Low 48 degrees.
TUESDAY: Mostly sunny, windy and warmer. West winds 15 to 25 mph. High 82 degrees.
WEDNESDAY: Sunny and windy in the afternoon. Southwest winds 10 to 20 mph the morning increasing to 15 to 30 mph with gusts to 40 in the afternoon. High 90 degrees.