Winter Storm Warning in the Bighorn Basin – The Second Time in Two Weeks
Written by Andrew-Rossi on February 20, 2023
February is determined to make up for lost time this winter, as the entire Bighorn Basin can expect another several inches of snow and freezing temperatures.
As if last week’s winter storm wasn’t enough, the National Weather Service Office in Riverton issued another Winter Storm Warning for the Bighorn Basin. The warning is in anticipation of another blast of winter weather expected to cover Wyoming from Tuesday, Feb. 21, to Wednesday, Feb. 22.
The Valentine’s Day snowstorm was even more intense than anticipated. Over 18 inches of snow was recorded in Wapiti, while the rest of the region received between three and nine inches.
This week’s storm will be decidedly unpleasant, with heavy snow accompanied by 60 mph winds and two days of sub-zero temperatures before the front moves on.
The N.W.S. Office in Riverton is predicting the following snowfall for the Bighorn Basin:
- 3 to 6 inches for the northern Bighorn Basin
- 4 to 8 inches for the Cody Foothills
- 5 to 10 inches for the southern Bighorn Basin.
As soon as the snow starts falling, the winds start blowing. Winds gusting as high as 60 mph are expected from Tuesday night into Wednesday afternoon.
Then there are the freezing temperatures. On Wednesday and Thursday nights, “very cold temperatures likely, with overnight low temperatures 10 below to as much as 25 below zero. Thursday high temperatures may struggle to get out of the single digits east of the Continental Divide.”
And that’s not even the worst of the storm. A rare Blizzard Warning is in effect for south-central Wyoming.
Wyoming drivers should prepare for difficult driving conditions, especially with the strong winds blowing several inches of snow across the state’s highways.
The N.W.S. Office Riverton anticipates the snow will “persist” across western mountains and valleys. Gusty winds will lead to reduced visibility, with blowing, drifting snow expected. These conditions likely mean another week of perilous conditions and closures on Interstate 80 – something that’s been frequently happening during Winter 2022-2023.
The Wyoming 511 website and app are the best ways to get accurate road conditions before embarking on a journey. Thousands if not millions of people trust the W.Y.D.O.T. resources, as the site recorded over two billion hits in 2022.