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Erin Bergey and Susannah Pratt make their way up a trail above the University of Utah on their mountain bikes as they take advantage of the cooler temperatures Saturday, July 27, 2013.

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A frosty start to September? Here’s what’s causing temperatures to slide across Utah

By Carter Williams, KSL.com | Posted - Aug. 31, 2020 at 11:00 a.m.



SALT LAKE CITY — Given how hot it has been the past few weeks, you can consider the next few days as an unofficial reminder that summer is coming to an end soon.

A cold front from the north entered Utah Sunday evening, according to KSL meteorologist Dan Guthrie, and is expected to complete its journey across the state by Monday night or early Tuesday morning.

As it moves across Utah Monday, a cool air mass behind it is expected to cause temperatures to dip closer to the normal for late August, which is also much cooler than anything Utahns have experienced lately.

“Well, we’ve seen temperatures be in the 60s to 70s as lows the last couple of days. We’ll see those drop down,” Guthrie said.

When the cold front reached Salt Lake City Monday morning, the temperature at Salt Lake City International Airport dipped below 60 degrees for the first time since July 8, the National Weather Service reported. The weather service added it was 57 degrees in Salt Lake City around 7:15 a.m. — much closer to Salt Lake City’s normal low for Aug. 31, which is 59 degrees.

The agency also reported some areas in northern Utah reached lows in the 30s overnight. It was 36 degrees in Logan at 7:15 a.m.

With forecasted lows nearing the freezing point Tuesday morning, the National Weather Service issued a frost advisory for northern Utah and the Wasatch backcountry, but it has since been rescinded. Still, NWS forecasters say residents within the Cache Valley, High Uintas and Wasatch backcountry will likely see overnight lows in the 30s to begin September, which may result in patchy frost in those areas.

The weather service’s Salt Lake City office also oversees western Wyoming and issued a freeze warning for most of that region from 2 a.m. to 9 a.m. Tuesday, when temperatures are expected to reach as low as 28 degrees.

The National Weather Service said residents in areas where frost is a possibility should take steps to protect any tender plants from the cold. They're also advised to take steps to prevent the bursting of water pipes, such as draining in-ground sprinkler systems.

Areas along the Wasatch Front will be warmer with overnight lows in the upper 40s and low 50s.

As for highs, Salt Lake City is forecasted to have highs near 80 degrees on Monday and 75 degrees Tuesday. It’s a reprieve from all the record-breaking heat the city has experienced this summer. The average high for Salt Lake City for Aug. 31 and Sept. 1 is 86 degrees, according to NWS climate data.

As the cold front rolls through, the forecasted high for Logan is 70 degrees Monday and 76 degrees Tuesday. St. George has a forecasted high of 97 degrees Monday and slightly lower at 93 degrees Tuesday.

The system also pushed out wildfire smoke buildup in the atmosphere along Utah as it passed through, KSL meteorologist Grant Weyman noted.

How long will these cooler temperatures last? Not very long. So, no, summer isn’t over quite yet heading into Labor Day weekend. That’s good news or bad news depending on your season preference.

Logan’s forecast shows that temperatures will start warming up as the week continues, Temperatures are expected to reach as high as 90 degrees by Saturday. In Salt Lake City, highs are expected to reach the low 90s by Thursday with a forecasted high of 96 degrees on Saturday. And temperatures will return to the 100s in St. George by Thursday with highs in around 105 degrees the remainder of the week.

Visit the KSL Weather Center for more forecasts across Utah over the next seven days.

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Carter Williams

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