Temperatures plunge by 60 degrees in under 24 hours, bringing snow to Colorado, Montana, Wyoming and South Dakota

snow storm rockies september 2020, snow storm rockies september 2020 video, snow storm rockies september 2020 pictures
A bison stands in snow storm in Colorado. Picture: AP/David Zalubowski

Summer came to an abrupt halt in parts of the Rocky Mountains on Tuesday as temperatures reaching into the 90s plunged by around 60 degrees in less than 24 hours, with a powerful surge of cold air from Canada unleashing snow and damaging winds in several states.

The roller coaster weather ripped up trees by their roots, piled up snow that shut down parts of the scenic road through Glacier National Park and knocked out power to tens of thousands.

But the temperature drop gave some relief to crews fighting wildfires in Colorado and Montana that had ballooned in hot, windy weather and forced people to flee their homes.

Heat and strong winds also hit California and parts of the Pacific Northwest over the holiday weekend, triggering destructive wildfires.

Snow fell in Colorado, Montana and Wyoming, where portions of Interstate 80 closed and forecasters predicted up to a foot in the mountains and temperatures in the teens overnight.

In Utah, where temperatures dropped by 40 degrees, wind gusts of nearly 100 mph roared through the Salt Lake City area, downing trees and leaving tens of thousands without electricity.

Several northern Utah school districts canceled classes, and officials warned people to stay inside if possible to avoid flying debris, downed power lines and other dangers. Several semitrailer trucks blew over on northern Utah highways.

The Utah Capitol, which was already closed to visitors because of the coronavirus pandemic, shut to employees as well Tuesday as winds ripped up large trees by their roots, Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox tweeted.

Six inches or more of snow could fall in the northern and central Rockies, with 1 to 2 feet dropping in the highest peaks, the National Weather Service said.

It has issued scattered winter storm warnings and weather advisories from southern Montana to southern Colorado. Freeze and frost warnings also were posted for parts of Montana, Idaho, Colorado, Nebraska, North Dakota and Minnesota.

The cold and snow will help the fight against the Cameron Peak Fire in northern Colorado, which nearly quadrupled in size over the weekend, sending smoke and ash into Denver. The weather was gradually expected to warm up, with temperatures back up in the 80s by the weekend in the Denver area.

In Montana, where the weather began to shift Sunday night, the small city of Red Lodge, a gateway to Yellowstone National Park, had received 10.5 inches of snow. 

The storm forced officials to close Beartooth Pass on Monday, due to extreme conditions. Several inches of snow fell in the area, making some roads impassable.

A windstorm in western Montana on Monday knocked down trees and power lines and damaged docks and boats on Flathead Lake, the largest natural freshwater lake west of the Mississippi River in the contiguous U.S.

Ken and Karen Brown, who live in Safety Bay on the southwest side of the lake, told NBC Montana that the community usually lives up to its name but that wind-driven waves took most of the planks off their dock.

“This is probably one of the stronger storms we’ve had in the 23 years I’ve been here,” Ken Brown told the TV station.

Warm weather in Montana over the weekend also fueled the rapid growth of a wildfire near the university town of Bozeman, forcing people to evacuate their homes.

Meanwhile, high temperatures are expected to remain in the 30s on Tuesday and Wednesday… Weather war!


  1. Iran prepares for a third wave of coronavirus outbreak

    Iranian officials have warned that the country would experience a third wave of coronavirus in the fall.
    al-monitor Iranians wearing face masks walk down a street in the capital Tehran amid the novel coronavirus pandemic on Aug. 9, 2020. Photo by ATTA KENARE/AFP via Getty Images.
    Al-Monitor Staff

    Al-Monitor Staff

    Topics covered


    Sep 3, 2020

    Even as the number of coronavirus deaths has fallen in the last few weeks, Iranian officials are warning that the country will soon witness a third wave.

    According to Health Ministry spokesperson Sima Sadat Lari, Iran had almost 2,000 new confirmed coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours, bringing the total documented infections in the country to 380,000. Also in the last 24 hours, there have been 129 coronavirus-linked deaths, bringing the confirmed death total to nearly 22,000. While these are the documented number of coronavirus deaths and cases in the country, Iranian officials have warned previously the actual numbers for both are higher.

    Iran was one of the earliest countries to have an outbreak of coronavirus infections, largely due to its close relations and travel with China, where the virus is believed to have originated. In February, the first cases of the virus and deaths in Iran began to be documented. In March, the country implemented a nationwide lockdown, making exceptions for only essential services but soon gradually easing the measures in April due to the economic pressures of a sustained lockdown. Coronavirus cases and deaths increased once again for a period of time in July and have come back down in the last few weeks.

    Now officials are warning of a third wave. “Counting down the days until school starts on one hand and hearing the footsteps of fall on the other has increased the concerns of another outbreak of coronavirus,” wrote Javan newspaper.

    Head of the Coronavirus Combat Operations Headquarters in Tehran Alireza Zali spoke about some of the issues facing Tehran. To give an example of the population density in the city, Zali said that district four of Tehran is the same size population-wise as all of Ilam province. He added that Tehran province as a whole has a population of nearly 15 million. Zali said that approximately 1 million people a day enter Tehran for work and leave at the end of the workday, adding that 400,000 cars enter Tehran every day from Alborz province. He said nearly 1 million people use the metro and the bus system in the city. A third wave is imminent, Zali warned.
    Disclaimer always apply

  2. The Mayor’s Poems

    The village mayor wrote a poem and read it to Nasrudin.

    “Did you like the poem?” he asked.

    “No, not really,” Nasrudin replied, “it wasn’t very good.”

    The mayor was enraged, and he sentenced Nasrudin to three days in jail. The next week, the mayor called Nasrudin in his office to read him another poem he had written. When the mayor finished reading, he turned to Nasrudin and asked, “Well, what do you think of this one?”

    Nasrudin did not say anything, and immediately began walking away. The mayor inquired, “Just where do you think you’re going?’

    “To jail!” Nasrudin replied. lol

  3. I amend it JAVVEE. If we look for commonality we can find it .
    Differences will be solved or illuminated gradually.

    • Nah….it can snow anytime of the year in Montana. Even seen it snow further south in Reno, NV years ago in the middle of August.

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