The National Weather Service on Tuesday night announced that a winter storm could dump up to 33 inches of snow on the San Juan Mountains beginning Wednesday night.
A storm warning is in effect from 5 p.m. Wednesday through 5 p.m. Friday.
“There could be big time snow Thursday into Thursday night,” Dennis Phillips, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Grand Junction, told The Durango Herald.
The forecast calls for total snow accumulations of 12 to 24 inches in the mountains, with up to 33 inches in localized areas. A storm warning is issued when a hazardous weather is occurring, imminent or likely.
“Travel could be very difficult to impossible,” the weather service said, adding that frostbite and power line damage also were possible.
Montezuma County is expected to get 3 to 5 inches of snow on Wednesday night and 3 to 7 inches on Thursday. Snow also is forecast for Friday, but it is expected to diminish late Friday night. High temperatures are expected to be around 23 degrees on Wednesday and 28 degrees on Thursday and Friday. Lows are expected to be about 18 degrees on Wednesday and Thursday and drop to about 11 degrees on Friday night.
Sunshine is expected to return Saturday through Tuesday, with high temperatures gradually rising from 27 to 33 degrees. Low temperatures are expected to range from 7 degrees on Saturday night to 13 degrees on Monday night.
Southwest Colorado, reeling from drought since fall 2017, could use the snow.
As of Tuesday, snowpack in the Animas, Dolores, San Juan and San Miguel basins was at 118 percent of historic averages.