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Storm brings rain to Phoenix, snow to northern Arizona

PHOENIX — The calendar may read May, but Mother Nature must think it’s November in Arizona.

Things took a turn for the cooler Friday, when a small storm brought rain to the Phoenix area and snow to northern Arizona.

In the state’s high country, a winter storm advisory was issued. At least seven inches of snow fell in Bellemont, about 10 miles west of Flagstaff, while Arizona Snowbowl received up to a foot in some places. More snow is expected to fall Friday night.

“It’s always good to see rain and snow this late in the season,” Brian
Klimowski of the National Weather Service said. “Every storm we get like this helps
push back the onset of our fire season.”

That snow will not be more than rain in the Valley. The wet stuff began falling about 11 a.m., with the first reported showers beginning in the north Valley. In fact, Friday’s rainfall set a Phoenix record for May 15. The .34 inches recorded at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport broke the previous May 15 record of .11 inches. According to the National Weather Service, it is only the fourth time since the 1890’s that Phoenix has had rain on May 15.

The National Weather Service also said that rain could continue into the early hours of Saturday morning. Flooding was possible in some mountain areas near Phoenix.

The front is expected to move out of the state by Saturday, leaving below-average temperatures in its wake.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.