MISSOULA — A cold front will bring some mountain snow and valley rain to western Montana Wednesday morning. The main area expected to have snow accumulations is the Bitterroot and Sapphire mountains, including Lolo and Lost Trail passes. The set up is also favorable for banded snow showers that will cause periods of moderate to heavy snow in these areas from around 5am-8am, so a winter weather advisory has been issued for the Bitterroot and Sapphire mountains through 9 am.
Gusty winds are expected to develop during Wednesday morning with gusts up to 40 mph common. Gusts near or over 50 mph are also expected southeast of Missoula and in the high terrain. Travelers should prepare for strong crosswinds east of Missoula on Interstate 90, MT Highway 200, and US Highway 12 to the Continental Divide.
Another round of rain showers arrives Thursday and sticks around into Friday. Right now, rain looks to be most widespread for northwest Montana during this time.
Taking a quick look at the weekend, models are bringing in dry and cool weather with sunny skies and highs topping out in the mid to upper 40s on both Saturday and Sunday.