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Utah forecast: Chilly, windy, wet and in the mountains — snow
Sometimes, autumn in the Beehive State is like the Creedence Clearwater Revival's "Sweet Hitchhiker," just "a slight distraction standin' by the road ... smilin' there, yellow in her hair."
In the space of a few weeks, northern Utah's weather has gone from sweltering days flirting with triple-digit temperatures to daytime highs in the 50s — and a return of snow to the mountains.
Snow not only made its seasonal debut in the higher elevations of the Wasatch and Oquirrh mountains late Wednesday but more is on its way. The National Weather Service issued a Winter Weather Advisory for northeastern Utah north of Vernal beginning 6 p.m. Thursday and running into Friday evening.
Forecasters said an upper-level low pressure system passing through northern Utah and into Wyoming is to blame for snow in the Uinta Mountains. Up to 8 inches of the white stuff were expected above 9,000 feet elevation, while 4 inches were predicted for the zone around the 7,500-foot level.
In southeastern Utah, the NWS issued a Wind Advisory, warning that steady winds of 30 mph and gusts topping 50 mph would lash the area from Green River southeast to Moab between noon and 7 p.m. Thursday.
Temperatures along the Wasatch Front Friday were to range into the mid-50s along with afternoon rain showers, a forecast that duplicated Thursday's climatological expectations.
Southern Utah looked for highs Friday in the upper-60s and low-70s under partly cloudy, gusty skies. That forecast also echoed the one for Thursday, though it was a few degrees cooler.
Air quality earned a "Green," or healthy grade statewide, according to the Utah Division of Air Quality.
Meanwhile, the Intermountain Allergy & Asthma website had mixed news for allergy sufferers, noting that sagebrush and ragweed were at elevated levels, "very high" and "high," respectively. Chenopod and grass pollen levels were "moderate."
Salt Lake City's high temperatures were pegged at 55 degrees for both Friday and Thursday; Ogden expected 54s on both days; Provo 54 and 60 degrees, respectively; Logan 52 and 54; Wendover 56 and 53; Duchesne 53 and 60; Cedar City 54 and 61; St. George 71 and 74; and Moab 65 and 79 degrees.