Rabbit Ears Pass closed; Routt County under Winter Weather Advisory | SteamboatToday.com

Rabbit Ears Pass closed; Routt County under Winter Weather Advisory

Rabbit Ears Pass from Kremmling to Steamboat Springs is closed due to a winter storm.

The closure comes as the Yampa Valley is under a Winter Weather Advisory lasting until 6 a.m. Thursday, Jan. 6, with snowfall and wind gusts as high as 50 mph complicating travel.

Travel could be worse at higher elevations, like on Rabbit Ears Pass, which is under a Winter Storm Warning that will remain in place until 11 p.m. Thursday. The Elkhead, Park and Gore mountains, which surround the valley to the north, east and south, are expected to receive 1-2 feet of snow with some areas potentially reaching up to 3 feet.

“We’re expecting quite a bit of snow and really strong winds,” said Erin Walter, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Grand Junction. “On the ridge tops, gusts of approximately 60 mph are possible.”

Snow could complicate travel over Rabbit Ears Pass on Wednesday, Jan. 5, and Thursday, Jan 6. The area is currently under a Winter Storm Warning, and up to 3 feet of snow is possible.
Courtesy/National Weather Service

The weather service forecast snow until Thursday night with a break during the day Friday, before starting up again that night. Including what has already fallen, Steamboat could see between 12 and 18 inches of snow by Friday morning, Jan. 7. There is a 97% chance it will be at least 8 inches.

Walter said a cold front will try to move over the area, leading to various bands of precipitation. This will likely result in periods of heavier snow combined with times where it appears to by dying off.

“We are expecting another 3 to 7 inches to fall this afternoon and overnight,” Walter said. “Those higher totals really start to jump up as you move further up the resort and into the Park Range.”

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