Rain to usher out 2021 in metro Phoenix, snow to party on in Flagstaff
PHOENIX – It doesn’t have to be a top hat, but you may want to cover your head while out and about in metro Phoenix on New Year’s Eve – there’s a pretty good chance of rain Friday.
Forecasters at the National Weather Service bureau in Phoenix said there was a 90% chance of rain during the daytime and 70% on New Year’s Eve night. Up to one-quarter inch could fall and temperatures were to top out at 59 degrees.
Less than a tenth of an inch was expected to fall Thursday, when chances grow from 50% in the afternoon to a possible 80% by nightfall. The high was supposed to be 60 degrees.
“It looks like it’s going to peak early on New Year’s Eve,” Phoenix weather bureau meteorologist Andrew Deemer told KTAR News 92.3 FM on Thursday. “Activity will start to dwindle towards midnight.”
The majority of rain should fall between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., he said, but the window for more will be open for hours after that.
Those rain chances are pretty high, above 90%, for many areas in south-central AZ, and between 50-70% for SW AZ and SE Cali. However, the latest forecast for rainfall totals have taken a step down. Highest amounts still favored over the mountains. #azwx #cawx pic.twitter.com/kZHHB1mYss
— NWS Phoenix (@NWSPhoenix) December 30, 2021
New Year’s Day should be sunny with a high of 57 degrees and a low of 34 degrees or so.
The storm is likely to produce hazardous driving conditions across much of the state beginning late Thursday and rolling into Saturday.
A Winter Storm Watch has been issued for much of Northern Arizona above 6000' from Thur PM through Sat AM. Significant accumulations of snow are expected. New Year's Holiday travel in the mountains will be impacted – plan ahead! #azwx pic.twitter.com/oPJys6sWPi
— NWS Flagstaff (@NWSFlagstaff) December 29, 2021
Snow up north was predicted to be anywhere from 2 inches to 8 inches.
“Flagstaff snow totals (forecast) are quite astonishing,” Deemer said. “They’ll probably add another 3 to 5 inches when all is said and done.”
Road closures are possible and the most hazardous driving conditions are expected Friday afternoon and evening, the weather service said.
KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Morae Jordane and the Associated Press contributed to this report.