Dry start to week before wet September ends with more rain chances | SteamboatToday.com

Dry start to week before wet September ends with more rain chances

Eastern half of Routt County downgraded on U.S. Drought Monitor

The leaves along the Yampa River are starting to change colors on Sunday, Sept. 25.
Dylan Anderson/Steamboat Pilot & Today

Steamboat Springs will continue to see clear skies and slightly above average temperatures to start the week, before more chances for rain close out the week.

A measurement site near Steamboat Springs High School has recorded some amount of precipitation 10 of the last 11 days, and the amount of rainfall seen so far this month is nearly a half-inch above average.

This moisture led officials to remove fire restrictions last week and even has allowed parts of Routt County to be downgraded from “moderate drought” to “abnormally dry” on the latest U.S. Drought Monitor released on Thursday, Sept. 22. 

But things will start out dry in the Yampa Valley this week before a system comes in from the northwest that will bring several chances for rain, though it is too early to know how much.

“We’re looking pretty dry out there, there’s really not even a cloud in the sky out there (on Sunday, Sept. 25),” said Mark Miller, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service. “Warm and above normal through the next couple of days, and I think once we get into Wednesday (Sept. 28) and Thursday (Sept. 29), we’ll be looking at more moisture.”

Average temperature for late September in Steamboat is just below 70, and it will likely stay above that mark to start the week with highs near 74, according to the National Weather Service. That is expected to taper off through the week, until highs drop to right around average at 67 degrees by Thursday.

Local meteorologist Mike Weissbluth said the late-week precipitation would come from what is currently a large storm off of Alaska’s Aleutian Islands. While it looks impressive now, Weissbluth said the system will likely split before it passes over the Pacific Northwest, meaning it probably won’t be “too threatening.”

The eastern half of Routt County has been downgraded from “moderate drought” to “abnormally dry” on the latest rendition of the U.S. Drought Monitor released last week.
U.S. Drought Monitor/Courtesy image

“Whenever you have these splitting systems, it’s not clear how much drops down to the south and how much of it moves north,” said Weissbluth, who runs the forecasting website Snowalarm.com. “There are a couple of pieces that are not quite settled on by the models, but it looks like we will see showers ahead of that.”

The North American model has the storm passing through rather quickly, where the European model has the storm lagging over the west a bit longer and impacting the area through the end of the weekend, Weissbluth said.

“I would tend to side with the European (model),” Weissbluth said. “I would say unsettled for Friday at least, and likely (unsettled weather) Saturday as well.”

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