Beautiful Rainy Night & Less Smoke

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Posted at 4:16 PM, Sep 15, 2022

An AIR QUALITY ALERT continues for far western Montana.

A beautiful rain tonight and more rain in the forecast through the weekend into the start of autumn means less wildfire activity and smoke. This weather forecast is full of good news. While the air quality is still less than perfect, the rain will continue to chip away at the smoke over the next several days. Rain has and will be falling over more of not just Montana's fires, but wildfires in Idaho and Oregon that are contributing smoke to our sky. Looking longer range, next week there will be a "perfect storm" that will produce cooler temperatures, rain and mountain snow across most of the West from California all the way through Montana. Significant precipitation is likely to fall over many of the wildfires in the West. Tonight, rain and thunderstorms will continue for much of the night. The rain may be heavy at times with thunderstorms this evening, but gradually the precipitation will turn more into a steady rain that will linger into Friday morning for areas like Helena and Great Falls. In the afternoon, the rain will shift through central Montana. A few isolated thunderstorms may redevelop in the afternoon around Helena and Great Falls after several hours of sunshine. Highs will be in the 60s and 70s. Some of this wet weather will move through northeast Montana late in the evening. Saturday will be a pleasant day with partly cloudy skies and highs in the 70s. A few afternoon showers and thunderstorms are possible in the western and central areas. Sunday will have increasing clouds, showers and thunderstorms by afternoon. Highs will be in the 60s and 70s. A significant Canadian front is likely on Tuesday with showers and some high mountain snow. A more significant storm is possible for the first few days of fall. It's this storm that could bring widespread rain and snow across the West. This will help bring us closer to the end of fire season while really cleaning up the smoke. Hip hip hooray.

Curtis Grevenitz
Chief Meteorologist