Relief for dry Grand Valley may come Tuesday

The rain that began falling in the lower elevations Sunday evening could provide a hint of what’s to come early this week for a bone-dry Grand Valley.

A second storm system will roll into western Colorado tonight, following the one that came through Sunday that was expected to dump several inches of snow in the southern and central mountains of Colorado.

The best chance of precipitation in Grand Junction might come Tuesday afternoon, according to Paul Frisbie, meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Grand Junction. The forecast calls for a 50 percent chance for a mix of rain and snow, although no snow accumulation is expected.

The moisture would provide some relief for lawns and trees enduring a dry winter thus far. A total of 4.2 inches of snow has fallen since Dec. 1, 7 fewer inches than the average for this time of year. Total precipitation since Dec. 1 is 0.78 inch, more than a half-inch less than normal, according to the Weather Service.

Frisbie said as far as local water supplies are concerned, what really matters is the snowpack level, which also has been below normal. This pair of storms should help change that.

“These next couple of storms should have pretty good moisture content,” he said. “We’ll see where we’re at Wednesday.”

A winter weather advisory and a winter storm warning are in effect for many of the central and southwestern mountains, respectively, until noon today. More than a foot of snow is expected to fall in some areas. The second storm should produce another round of heavy snow by Wednesday morning.

In Grand Junction, any snow and rain are expected to taper off by Wednesday morning and give way to drier conditions. High temperatures are expected to be in the mid-40s all week.


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