Snow showers will develop in the northern and central mountains Friday night with a slight chance of some showers rolling east over the plains early Saturday morning. The area north of the I-70 corridor through the high country could see around five to 10 inches of snow. The heaviest snow is expected to occur over the northern mountains, according to NWS.
Some areas will see wind chills as low as 20 below zero, which can cause frostbite on exposed skin in as little as 30 minutes.
Eastern Colorado will be more impacted by high winds. Wind gusts could reach 70 mph along the Front Range.
The combination of gusty winds and snow could lead to poor visibility, with higher elevations exposed to strong winds potentially seeing visibility reduced to less than a quarter mile, according to NWS. The wind will cause blowover onto the foothills that may cause visibility reductions, especially after midnight. NWS said the strong winds will blow around unsecured objects, could cause tree limbs to be blown down and potentially lead to a few power outages.
Saturday afternoon, the Colorado Department of Transportation closed eastbound Interstate 70 at Silverthorne due to adverse conditions. There is no estimated time when it will reopen. Two hours later, both directions of I-70 between Georgetown and Silverthorne were closed due to extremely adverse weather conditions, multiple crashes, and spin outs. Loveland Pass was also closed.
The winds also pose a problem for ongoing wildfires. Rocky Mountain National Park, which has been impacted by the East Troublesome and Cameron Peak fires, said the park has high fire danger Friday into the evening due to the wind. The two wildfires are the largest in Colorado history with the East Troublesome Fire currently 193,812 acres and the Cameron Peak Fire at 208,913 acres. They are 60% and 92% contained, respectively.
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