Nick Wagner, KSL, File

Winter storm watch issued across Utah as snow, cold weather forecast to return this weekend

By Carter Williams, | Updated - Nov. 6, 2020 at 5:33 p.m. | Posted - Nov. 6, 2020 at 2:51 p.m.

SALT LAKE CITY — Wintry weather is expected to return to the Beehive State this weekend.

The National Weather Service on Friday issued three winter storm watches covering areas along the Wasatch benches and backcountry, as well as other places in northeastern and southwestern Utah, that will go into effect Saturday.

KSL meteorologist Grant Weyman explained the storm is a result of a system currently in California. It is moving south before the moisture of the system moves northeast into Utah. It's expected to produce some rain in Utah on Saturday, with more of the snow accumulating Sunday and possibly into Monday.

A winter weather watch for the western Uinta Mountains will begin at 6 a.m. Saturday. The weather service projects winds of 35 to 55 mph in the area with snow accumulation ranging from 4 inches to as much as 18 inches in some of the highest elevated areas.

The second and third watches — which go into effect at noon Saturday — cover areas in northern Utah from Alta and Brighton in eastern Salt Lake County to areas like Randolph and Woodruff in Rich County, as well as areas in southwestern Utah like Bryce Canyon, Loa and Panguitch.

Wind gusts are expected to be as high as 30 to 50 mph in both areas of the state.

Snow accumulation is forecast to be anywhere from 4 to 14 inches within the perimeters of the northern Utah watch. Places like Brigham City, Ogden and Salt Lake City aren't expected to get much, if any, snow accumulation by Monday, according to a graphic by the National Weather Service. Logan and Provo are expected to receive a brushing of snow, while Park City and Heber City are forecast to receive 3 to 4 inches of snow.

The agency also expects southern Utah cities like Cedar City, Bryce Canyon and Monticello to receive anywhere between 2 to 6 inches. High-elevation areas between Cedar City and Zion National Park are forecast to have upwards of 18 inches of snow from the storm, according to the graphic.

The National Weather Service warned motorists to be prepared for slippery road conditions and said that travel "could be very difficult" in some areas within the winter storm watches over the weekend.

The Utah Department of Transportation issued a road weather alert ahead of the storm with the worst conditions expected between 5 p.m. Saturday to 5 p.m. Sunday. Officials warned conditions will likely be slick on:

  • I-15 (Near Cove Fort)
  • I-80 (Mouth of Parleys Canyon to Utah-Wyoming border)
  • I-70/I-15 Junction to Fremont Junction
  • U.S. Highway 6 (Skull Rock Pass; U.S. 89 Junction to Helper)
  • U.S. Highway 40 (Silver Creek Jct. to Duchesne)
  • U.S. Highway 89 (Logan Summit; Sardine Canyon; U.S. 6 Junction to Fairview; Sevier to Mount Carmel Junction)
  • U.S. Highway 189 (Provo Canyon, Upper canyon)
  • U.S. Highway 191 (Utah-Wyoming border to Vernal; Indian Canyon Summit; La Sal Junction to Blanding)
  • State Route 12 (Entire route)
  • S.R. 14 (Entire route)
  • S.R. 20 (Entire route)
  • S.R. 31 (Entire route)
  • S.R. 153 (Entire route)
  • S.R. 143 (Entire route)
  • S.R. 150 (Entire route)
  • S.R. 190 (Big Cottonwood Canyon)
  • S.R. 210 (Little Cottonwood Canyon)

Weyman said the storm will likely provide Utah ski resorts with a good base ahead of the upcoming ski season that begins later this month.

Temperatures are also expected to plummet with the storm, ending a run of pleasant weather around the state. Highs along the Wasatch Front were expected to top out in the mid-70s Friday afternoon.

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"(Friday) is the last of the warm days for the season, I'm afraid," Weyman said. "No more 70s after today."

Highs are expected to be in the mid-60s Saturday in Salt Lake City, Provo, Ogden and Logan with showers likely. Colder air is expected to move in late Saturday into early Sunday. Highs along the Wasatch Front are forecast to be in the low to mid-40s Sunday and into the ensuing week. Overnight lows are expected in the 20s and 30s during that time.

Highs in Cedar City will drop from low 70s Friday to mid-50s Saturday and upper 30s Sunday and Monday. St. George highs will fall from low 80s Friday to low 60s Saturday and low 50s Sunday. Rain is likely for Sunday and high temperatures will remain in the 50s heading into next week.

For complete seven-day forecasts of locations around Utah visit the KSL Weather Center page.

Carter Williams

KSL Weather Forecast