Editor’s note: An update to this story can be found here.
The big storm that Utahns have been warned to expect late Tuesday into Wednesday may dump even more snow on the state than originally expected.
A winter storm warning will be in effect through 11 p.m. Wednesday, but the National Weather Service is now forecasting total accumulations of 8-16 inches in valleys along the Wasatch Front, with up to 20 inches on the benches. (An an earlier forecast projected 6-12 inches in the valleys.)
Utah’s northern mountains are expected to get 2-3 feet of snow, with even more in some areas, and 1-2 feet is forecast for the state’s central and southern mountains.
The storm — which will begin as rain, then become snow — is moving into Utah from the north, and is expected to impact virtually the entire state.
“If you have the option to telework or postpone travel Wednesday morning, consider doing so,” the weather service advised.
There is a slight chance of snow continuing on Thursday and Friday.
The storm will also bring cooler temperatures. Wednesday’s forecast high in Salt Lake City is just 25 degrees, with an overnight low of 19. Temperatures are expected to be in the mid-30s on Thursday, the upper 30s on Friday, and the low 40s on Saturday.
The storm front will gradually shift south, and will “eventually slow down or even stall for a time” from roughly Beaver County to the Uinta Basin on Tuesday night, according to the National Weather Service. By Wednesday, most of the rest of the state will experience “at least a period of snow.”
High wind warnings will be in effect in much of southern Utah. In the St. George area and Zion National Park, southwest winds of 30-40 mph were expected, with gusts up to 65 mph until 3 a.m. Wednesday.
In St. George, there’s a chance of snow — half an inch to an inch — on Tuesday night and Wednesday, with a chance of small accumulations on Thursday and Friday. Temperatures will fall to the low to mid-40s on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.