Utah forecast: A turn for the wet, and mountain snow
Summer's still a fresh memory, and autumn's just begun, yet a weekend winter weather advisory for much of Utah stirs a sigh for the sun.
British poet James Nash knew that feeling when he penned, "Stay a moment more with me, warming my hands in yours, before, howling, I blow into winter."
Blame it on a cool, Pacific storm system moving into the Wasatch Front with rain along the valleys and snow in the mountains the National Weather Service does. Forecasters issued a winter weather advisory for the state's mountainous spine and plateaus stretching from the Utah-Wyoming border and running south and west through Park City, Provo, Nephi, Richfield, Cedar City and just north of St. George.
The advisory, beginning late Friday morning, was in effect into mid-Saturday morning for elevations above 8,000 feet. Based on ski resort cameras, NWS meteorologist Linda Cheng said it appeared one to three inches of snow fell in those higher elevations.
In the valleys, though, the storm system was to bring rainfall. For northern Utah, the precipitation was ushered in by thunderstorms building through Friday morning and beginning to shower the region in the afternoon. Saturday was to dawn cloudy, with high temperatures in the mid-60s.
Rain showers, thunder and lightning even some hail began early for southern Utah, leaving the streets of St. George glistening Friday morning, and putting Santa Clara public safety officials on alert for potential flooding along the Santa Clara River. But as of Friday night, Santa Clara officials reported that they were fine, Cheng said.
However, rains did make the dirt roads in Capitol Reef National Park impassable, and they will likely remained closed for a few days, Cheng added.
Rain was expected to continue through the evening before bringing a sunny and mostly clear Saturday to Utah's Dixie with highs in the low-70s.
The Utah Division of Air Quality raised its "Green," or healthy breathability banners going into the weekend throughout the state.
Salt Lake City's Saturday high temperature was pegged at 65, down 1 degree from Friday's forecast; Ogden looked for 64 and 66, respectively; Provo 66 and 69; Logan 64 and 65; Wendover 67s; Duchesne 600 and 59; Cedar City 66 and 51; St. George 71 and 62; and Moab 65 and 69 degrees.