Winter storm could dump foot or more of snow on much of East Idaho

December 13, 2016 GMT

File photo

By Journal Staff

The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm watch in anticipation of the up to one foot or more of fresh snow that’s expected to fall on East Idaho starting Wednesday morning.

The snow is forecast to continue through Friday morning.

Like with nearly every snowstorm that passes through East Idaho, higher elevation areas will bear the brunt of this week’s winter weather.

The winter storm watch is in effect for all of East Idaho’s mountain areas — including Island Park, Driggs, Ashton, St. Anthony, Swan Valley, Palisades, Bone, Thatcher, Wayan, Victor, Montpelier, Paris, Georgetown, St. Charles, Grace, Bancroft, Soda Springs, Lava Hot Springs, Rockland, McCammon, Arimo, Downey, Malad, Dubois, Arco, Oakley and Inkom.

These communities could receive up to a foot of snow, and it’s possible up to 18 inches of snow could fall in some mountain areas depending on the severity of the storm.

The weather service reports that driving in East Idaho’s higher elevations Wednesday morning through Friday morning will be “extremely difficult” because of the snowstorm.

East Idaho’s lower elevation areas will also receive snow — up to 4 inches Wednesday morning through Wednesday night.

These areas include Pocatello, Preston, Weston, Dayton, Chubbuck, Blackfoot, Fort Hall, American Falls, Burley, Rupert, Craters of the Moon, Idaho Falls, Ammon, Rigby, Rexburg, Roberts, Shelley, Firth and Aberdeen.

The precipitation is expected to change over to rain and freezing rain Thursday morning through Friday morning in these lowland areas.

The central Idaho mountains are also under a winter storm watch Wednesday morning through Friday morning with up to a foot or more of snow expected there.

Much of western Wyoming, including the Jackson Hole area, is under a winter weather advisory calling for up to a foot of snow. Other parts of Wyoming as well as much of Montana and Utah area under hazardous weather alerts in anticipation of the heavy snowfall expected from the storm.

Winter storm watches have been declared in much of western and northern Idaho and eastern Oregon. They call for up to 10 inches of mountain snow starting Tuesday night and possibly continuing into Thursday morning. The Boise, Mountain Home and Twin Falls areas could see up to 2 inches of snow as well as freezing rain.

As the storm approaches please pay attention to your local forecast, especially if you’re planning to travel.