High winds, a red flag warning and cooler temperatures are in Utah’s forecast

(Courtesy of the National Weather Service) High winds are forecast in Utah on Monday and Tuesday.

Strong southerly winds and low humidity will combine to create “critical fire weather conditions” across the western two-thirds of Utah on Tuesday, according to the National Weather Service.

Wind gusts of 30-40 mph are expected Monday, increasing to 45-50 mph on Tuesday, with the strongest winds in the central and southern Utah and the west deserts. Humidity is expected to be just 5-10%. In addition to high fire danger, the winds will create choppy lakes, blowing dust, reduced visibility and strong crosswinds that can affect driving, according to the NWS.

Temperatures will rise into the 80s along the Wasatch Front on Monday before a cold front moves in Monday night, cooling things off considerably. In the Salt Lake City area, the forecast calls for a high of 74 on Tuesday and just 59 on Wednesday, with lows in the mid-40s. And it’s expected to stay cool through the end of the work week with below-normal temperatures throughout northern Utah — a high of 70 on Thursday and 74 on Friday.

Temperatures will return to the 80s on Saturday and Sunday.

There’s not much chance of rain this week — 30% during the day on Tuesday and 40% Tuesday night, falling to 20% before 9 a.m. on Wednesday.

A red flag warning will be in effect Tuesday from noon-9 p.m. in Grand Staircase and Mojave Desert areas of southern Utah. There’s no precipitation in the forecast in the St. George area, where temperatures are expected to be in the 90s through Thursday, with a high of 100 on Friday. Forecast lows are in the 60s.