A HIGH WIND WATCH has been issued for the Rocky Mountain Front for Tuesday night into Wednesday evening.
A WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY has been issued for northwest Montana for Wednesday.
December showed up finally over the last several days with much colder temperatures and snow, but a chinook wind developed on Tuesday with warmer temperatures for parts of western and central Montana. As the wind comes down off of the mountains, it warms and picks up acceleration. This downsloping wind that melts snow is known as a "chinook" wind here in Montana. While places like Helena, Great Falls and Cut Bank experienced this wind, much of central and eastern Montana were still locked in an arctic airmass. Eventually this westerly wind will push out the cold air from eastern Montana briefly before more typical temperatures return. Wednesday, the warmer air will take over the entire state with highs reaching the 40s to around 50. Wind will be very strong for most locations through the afternoon and evening. A cold front will move through with scattered rain and snow showers in the lower elevations, and snow showers accumulating a few inches in the mountains. Colder air is back on Thursday with highs in the 20s and 30s. A west wind up to 25mph will create a decent wind chill. The mountains will see snow showers, but not much snow will fall over the valleys and plains. Friday will be partly cloudy to mostly sunny with continued cold temperatures in the 20s and 30s. This weekend will be another windy stretch for a lot of the state. Watches and warnings may be issued for strong wind. Temperatures will be in the 30s and 40s, but there will not be much snow in the lower elevations. The mountains will have snow showers through the weekend. While temperatures will be consistently colder, there does not appear to be much snow coming. Thus, conditions will remain fairly dry over the lower elevations. Besides a few snow showers on Sunday and Monday, the next opportunity for accumulating snow will come next Wednesday.