MISSOULA — A system will bring scattered rain/snow along with breezy winds to the forecast Wednesday. Showers look to be most widespread in northwest Montana along with the Seeley Lake/Swan Lake region this morning. Showers will then develop in west-central and southwest Montana this afternoon and evening. The winds will also pick up as the system moves through with gusts around 25-35 mph possible.
Skies will clear Thursday leading to a dry but cool day as highs top out in the upper 30's to low 40's.
The big change to our weather pattern starts Friday. Northwest Montana will be hit first Friday with snow showers, wind and cold temperatures. This arctic air will then move into west-central Montana Friday afternoon and southwest Montana Friday night. Here is a look at the forecast for Friday to give a better idea of what we are talking about.
Kalispell: High Temperature: 31, Low Temperature: 8, Forecast: Widespread snow and wind.
Missoula: High Temperature: 37, Low Temperature: 18, Forecast: Afternoon scattered snow showers
Hamilton: High Temperature: 44, Low Temperature: 21, Forecast: Mostly cloudy skies.
Widespread snow showers, gusty winds and cold temperatures move in for all of western Montana Saturday. There is still some uncertainty for snow fall totals, however, right now snow of 6"-to-12" looks likely at mountain pass level with a trace-to-3" in the valleys. The higher amounts do look to fall in northwest Montana. High temperatures will range from the teens in northwest Montana to the low 30's in southwest Montana. Gusty winds will also allow wind chill values to drop below zero Saturday night into Sunday.
By Sunday the snow will move out, however, cold air will remain in place through the beginning of next week with highs topping out in the 20's to low 30's through Tuesday.