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Utah forecast: Wanna build a snowman? Try the mountains
Winter storms » Wind-driven snow at higher elevations, but mostly rain in the valleys.
First Published Feb 12 2014 07:10 am • Last Updated Feb 12 2014 07:21 am

It’s a "Frozen" kind of late-week forecast for northern Utah, but if you and Princess Anna "wanna build a snowman," it will have to be in the mountains.

That’s because while the Wasatch Mountains north of Interstate 80 were under a Winter Storm Warning through noon Friday, and the range’s peaks and slopes south of I-80 were included in a Winter Weather Advisory into late Thursday afternoon, snowfall generally was expected to remain above 6,000 feet elevation.

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In the urban valleys of northern Utah, precipitation will primarily come in the form of rain.

Higher up, though, Anna would find conditions more like Disney’s fictional, icy Kingdom of Arendelle: the mountains were expected to add another 1-2 feet of new, wind-whipped snow. Gusts of up to 70 mph could make travel a wintry nightmare in the passes.

Along with the Wasatch Front, the western Uintas also were to feel the frigid fist of winter storms through the end of this week.

One more thing: you and Anna would be well-advised to stay within ski resort boundaries if you decide to go and play, build snow persons, and such. The Utah Avalanche Center had "high" risk ratings for the mountain backcountry of the Logan, Uinta, Provo and Skyline districts, and "considerable" avalanche risk grades for the mountains above Salt Lake City, Ogden and Moab.

Down in the Salt Lake and Tooele valleys, however, snowflakes won’t stand much of a chance. High temperatures in the 40s and periodic rain showers will take care of that on Thursday, mirroring Wednesday’s forecast.

Southern Utahns? They can laugh at it all, getting by with light jackets at night and stripping down to shirt sleeves and even shorts as temperatures rise into the upper-60s during the days and dip no lower than around 40 degrees overnight.

The Utah Division of Air Quality gave "green," or healthy breathing grades to the entire state for the mid-week period.

For more extensive forecast information, visit the Tribune’s weather page at http://www.sltrib.com/weather.

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Twitter: @remims

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