Weather: Cold blast, major temperature drop on the way for Arizona - East Valley Tribune: Weather

Weather: Cold blast, major temperature drop on the way for Arizona

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Posted: Thursday, January 10, 2013 6:19 pm | Updated: 6:26 pm, Thu Jan 10, 2013.

A Pacific storm rolling in will bring high winds, chances for rain and mountain snow, and a major drop in temperatures!

By tonight, winds will crank up as the cold front arrives. Here in the Valley, we will feel strong breezes up to 25 mph with gusts up to 30 mph.

Even stronger winds to our south and southwest will bring the threat of blowing dust to the open deserts.

Winds will be even stronger up north and out to the northwest where Wind Advisories are in effect. Peak gusts could reach 50 mph there.

The wind and dust will be followed by chances for rain and mountain snow.

We will see a 40 percent chance of Valley rain showers tonight. The key time frame will be between 5 p.m. and midnight.

We will see even better chances for rain and snow to our north.

Winter Weather Advisories are posted from 8 p.m. tonight through 3 a.m. Friday for northern Gila county, along the Mogollon Rim, and into the White Mountains. Right now it looks like we could see up to two inches of snow between 3,000 and 6,000 feet, with three to six inches above the 6,000 foot level.

Temperatures will drop more than 10 degrees as the cold air arrives on Friday. That will send Valley highs down to the upper 40s to low 50s and they will stay there through the weekend.

Overnight lows will plummet, too!

In fact, we are looking at some of the coldest air of the season arriving from the north, sending Valley overnight lows well below the freezing point with Phoenix Sky Harbor forecasted to drop in to the low 30s early Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday mornings. Freeze Watches are now in effect for those days.

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