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Entries in Montana cold snap (6)


Another shot of cold for Montana

Glacier National Park from the Apgar Lookout Wednesday morning, where temps were already below zero(MISSOULA)- After several inches of new snow fell across the region Tuesday, it's back to cold, with some sub-zero readings for Montana. 

A vigorous Pacific system, combined with colder Arctic air east of Divide brought heavy snow to Western and Southwestern Montana again this week. Some valleys, like the Bitterroot, received an additional 8-10" of snow, coming on top of the already significant snow that's been on the ground since shortly after Thanksgiving. 

Some of the mountain locations, especially in the southwest, received another 2-3 feet of snow, once more bringing concerns of avalanches. 

However, the main weather feature the next couple of days will be cold, complicated by wind. Standing air temps are expected to drop below zero in many areas, and feel much colder in some spots when combined with wind chill. 

Another shot of snow is expected Friday before conditions moderate with a mix of snow and rain for the weekend. 


Western MT temps to warm slowly, still very cold for the east

Temperatures across the Northern Rockies plunged to nearly -30 this weekend- GNP webcam photo(MISSOULA)- If you're idea of a "heat wave" is 17-degrees, you know you've been in one heck of a cold snap. 

That's what the forecast high in Missoula is Monday, following a weekend that saw temperatures statewide plunge to bitter, and even dangerous cold across Monday. 

Missoula, usually called the "Garden City" because of its relatively mild temperature, at least by Montana standards, barely climbed above zero all weekend long. But other temperatures were far more frigid. Great Falls was well below -20 most of the weekend. Havre was only -36 on Sunday. Jordan and Miles City residents took cover from -42 readings on Friday and Saturday. 

And those numbers don't even count the wind chill factor, which pushed the "feels like" temperatures down another 15-to-20 degrees and raised the serious risk of frostbite with prolonged exposure outside. 

In fact, two traditional "cold spots", West Yellowstone and Choteau, were actually the warmest in the state over the weekend, with highs in the single digits and mid-teens.

However, a tiny bit of relief is on the way this week, as the Arctic air that put the Treasure State in deep freeze starts to recede back into Canada. While Missoula slowly climbs back into the 20s, and then 30s by mid-week, Great Falls and North Central Montana will rebound to 32-degrees under sunny skies, although that won't happen until we cope with a threat of snow to start the week.

Wind chill warnings were still in place across Southwest Montana where lows will still be in the single digits even at mid-week in Bozeman. 


Temps plunge across Montana

Whitefish Mt Resort webcam shows the aftermath of Monday's storm (MISSOULA)- Forecasters are still expecting extremely cold weather to grip most of the Treasure State this week, as cold, Arctic air spills into the Northern Rockies for the first time this year. 

The change back to stormy conditions brought heavy snows to the mountains, and especially Northwest Montana and the Rocky Mountain Front region Monday, with areas of blowing and drifting snow and low visibility. That led to number of accidents, especially in the Flathead, as drivers were forced to cope with the winter driving conditions. 

By the second half of the week, temperatures are expected to plunge below zero, with Great Falls as cold as 15-to-16 degrees below zero and wind chills below that mark, even west of the Divide. Winter Storm Warnings remain posted through Wednesday. 


Cold snap opens May in Western MT

It doesn't look much like the First of May in Western MT- view from GNP webcam at Apgar Lookout(MISSOULA)- Western Montana got a dose of unseasonable weather to close out the first full month of spring, as heavy snow showers moved across the Northern Rockies region, and temperatures plunged to winter levels. 

The unsettled weather came behind that vigorous cold front that blew through the state on Monday. Both mountain and valley locations reported varying amounts of snow throughout the day. And there was cold as well. The National Weather Service says Kalispell tied the cold weather mark of 20-degrees set in 1982. 

Temperatures are expected to moderate through the second half of the week with highs Wednesday reaching the 50s. 


Missoula sets 4th low temp record in 8 days

(MISSOULA)- This is getting to be routine.  

For the fourth time in eight days Missoula has set another cold weather record, with the temperature dropping to a very frigid 20-degrees Tuesday morning. 

That breaks the old mark of 22-degrees that had held since April 23rd, 1968.

Missoula had already set two cold weather records early last week, breaking marks that were set in a very cold April back in 1986. Then again Monday, Missoula's 15-degrees broke the 18-degree record that dated back to 1951. 

This year's cold snap is a drastic difference from last year, when Missoula set the all-time high for April 23rd of 85-degrees during an unusual spell of warm weather. 

Butte was even colder this morning. The National Weather Service says this morning's low of 10-degrees breaks an old record of 15-degrees that also dated back to 1968. Butte also set a cold record maximum temperature when it only warmed up to 31-degrees on Monday.