This November, Flagstaff residents have been experiencing warmer weather than the colder patterns evident in recent years. The high for Monday, which reached 68 degrees, was 19 degrees over the average for that date and tied for the record high since 1898.
Flagstaff National Weather Service meteorologist Benjamin Peterson said the past week has been 10 to 15 degrees above normal recordings. However, he added that the warm weather will not last long. Despite the above-average temperatures late this fall, Peterson said local residents can expect lower temperatures and increased precipitation later this week.
“As a result of tropical moisture being brought in on the cold front, the high temperatures have been exceeding past averages,” Peterson said. “However, we expect the temperatures to drop and remain at a consistent high in the mid-40s over the weekend and into next week.”
The chance of precipitation is high for Wednesday and Thursday. With temperatures steadily dropping, the forecast predicts snowfall from late Wednesday afternoon going into Thursday evening. Peterson said a snow advisory will go into effect at 5 p.m. Wednesday.
“There is a 100% chance of rain on Wednesday with a mix of snow,” Peterson said. “It should snow until Thursday night with a high of 36 degrees.”
Snowfall accumulations will likely fluctuate around the Flagstaff area. Peterson said by Thursday evening, meteorologists are expecting 8 inches of snow at Pullium Airport and between 2 and 3 inches near the Flagstaff Mall.
Peterson said after the overnight snowfall, temperatures will incrementally increase to the mid-40s. Additionally, precipitation is expected to cease just in time for the weekend. Mostly sunny weather is expected for the weekend forecast from Friday to the following Tuesday, with a small chance of precipitation in the upcoming week.
“There is a possibility of snow and rain showers next week, but confidence is not high,” Peterson said.
For long-term forecasts, temperatures are expected to stay relatively steady with little precipitation throughout the month. Peterson explained that the winter outlook for this year is likely to have less than average snowfall.