Another round of snow is predicted today for western and southern Colorado, which could make an impact on travel through Saturday.
Snowy weather may make travel difficult for those returning home from the holiday, the Colorado Department of Transportation warned.
The strong Pacific storm is expected to bring widespread snowfall to the high country with a rain and snow mix possible in the lower valleys, a CDOT press release stated.
While the southern mountains will feel the brunt of the storm, with snow totals of up to 4 feet predicted for the higher elevations of the San Juan and La Garita mountains, moderate impacts are expected for the northern and central mountains, including the Sawatch and West Elk ranges.
CDOT reports a winter storm watch has been issued by the National Weather Service for much of the I-70 corridor and the central mountains from Thanksgiving Day through Saturday.
The watch includes the central mountain valleys, West Elk and Sawatch mountains and the communities of Aspen, Vail, Snowmass, Crested Butte, Taylor Park and Marble.
Motorists are reminded that travel will be difficult with moderate to locally heavy snowfall accumulations at higher elevations, and high winds and blowing snow will reduce visibility significantly.
Travelers along the I-70 corridor are also reminded to be prepared for the possibility of safety closures, which are conducted when road conditions become unsafe.
The closures allow time for patrols to work efficiently and return the highway to a safe condition.
A winter storm warning is in effect for the northwest San Juan Mountains and the southwest San Juan Mountains through Saturday evening.
The warning includes the towns of Telluride, Ouray, Lake City, Silverton, Rico and Hesperus.
Heavy snow is expected to bring locally higher accumulations in the southern mountains.
Winds are expected to gust as high as 45 to 55 mph, which will cause difficult to impossible travel conditions. Expect snowpacked roads, blowing snow and limited visibility.
Snowfall is expected over the central and eastern mountains along with the high valleys off and on through Saturday.
Snow totals over the central and eastern mountains are expected to be in the 8- to 12-inch range through Saturday, while the high valleys are anticipated to see 1 to 4 inches.
Locally higher amounts will be possible in these areas.
Some uncertainty remains with these totals, so travelers are advised to monitor forecasts for updated expected snowfalls.
A winter weather message was issued by the NWS for areas of Central Colorado including the West Elk and Sawatch mountains through Saturday afternoon
Heavy snow is possible at higher elevations with total snow accumulations of 12 to 18 inches possible. Winds could gust as high as 35 to 45 mph.
Travel could be very difficult. Blowing snow could significantly reduce visibility, especially on ridge tops and mountain passes.
Today’s forecast calls for partly sunny skies, a 30 percent chance of snow showers, a high near 33 and south wind around 10 mph.
Tonight snow showers are likely after 11 p.m., with a low around 26 and a 60 percent chance of snow. Snow accumulation of 1 to 2 inches is possible.
Friday has a 90 percent chance of snow showers with a high near 33 and a south wind of 10-15 mph, and gusts as high as 40 mph. New snow accumulation of 2 to 4 inches is possible.
Friday night will be mostly cloudy with a low around 12, west wind of 15-20 mph with 45 mph gusts and a 40 percent chance of snow.
Saturday will be mostly sunny and breezy, with a high near 20 and a west wind of 15-20 mph, with gusts as high as 45 mph.
Today’s forecast calls for a 40 percent chance of scattered snow. It will be cloudy through mid-morning, then become mostly sunny with a high near 26.
Tonight snow is likely with a 60 percent chance, mainly after 11 p.m. It will be mostly cloudy and breezy, with a low around 22 and a south wind of 15-20 mph. New snow accumulation of 1 to 3 inches is possible.
Friday has a 90 percent chance of snow, possibly heavy at times, with a high of 24. Widespread blowing snow is expected, mainly after 3 p.m., with a south wind of 25-35 mph becoming west-southwest in the afternoon.
Friday night widespread blowing snow will continue with a 60 percent of snow showers. It will be mostly cloudy with a low around 6.
Saturday a 30 percent chance of snow showers, mainly before 11 a.m., is predicted with blowing snow, mainly before 5 p.m. It will be partly sunny and cold with a high near 8.
Trout Creek Pass
Today a 20 percent chance of snow is predicted with partly sunny skies, a high near 34 and a south-southwest wind of 5-10 mph.
Tonight will be mostly cloudy with a 40 percent chance of snow showers, a low around 26 and south wind around 10 mph.
Friday’s forecast calls for an 80 percent chance of snow with a high near 35 and a south wind of 10-15 mph with 35 mph gusts. New snow accumulation of 2 to 4 inches is possible.
Friday night is expected to be mostly cloudy with a 40 percent chance of snow showers and a low around 16. It will be breezy, with a west wind around 20 mph and gusts as high as 40 mph.
Saturday will be windy with a west wind of 20-25 mph and gusts up to 40 mph. There is a 20 percent chance of snow showers. The high is predicted to be near 23.
Today will be partly sunny with a high near 31, a south wind of 10 mph and a 30 percent chance of snow showers after 11 a.m.
Tonight is predicted to be mostly cloudy with a low near 22, a south wind of 10-15 mph and a 40 percent chance of snow.
Friday’s forecast calls for a 90 percent chance of snow with accumulation of 3-5 inches possible. The high will be near 28 with a south-southeast wind of 15-20 mph becoming west-southwest in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 30 mph.
Friday night snow showers are likely with a 60 percent chance and accumulation of 1-3 inches possible. The low will be near 8. It will be breezy, with a west wind 20-25 mph and gusts as high as 45 mph.
Saturday will be partly sunny with a high near 11 and a west wind of 20-25 mph with gusts as high as 45 mph. There is a 70 percent chance of snow, mainly before 11 a.m.
CDOT recommends checking road conditions and weather before traveling.
For road conditions and travel information. visit cotrip.org or call 511.
For chain and traction law informaton, visit codot.gov/travel/colorado-chain-law.
Sign up for project or travel alerts at bit.ly/COalerts.
For scheduled lane closures, visit codot.gov/travel/scheduled-lane-closures.html.
For current weather conditions, visit weather.gov.