Lower temps on the way, possibly snow

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By The Staff

The National Weather Service in Albuquerque provided an update on the possibly significant winter storm system this weekend. The extended period of above normal temperatures generally light winds and very dry conditions will come to an abrupt end over the weekend as a powerful winter storm system crosses over New Mexico.

Major changes are expected Sunday morning as a potent arctic front surges south across the state.

High temperatures will likely occur before noon Sunday then rapidly fall through the afternoon. North and northwest winds of 20-30 mph with gusts up to 45 mph will occur behind the front creating bitterly cold wind chill values.

Meanwhile, snow is expected to develop across the northern mountains and the northeast plains Sunday morning before spreading south through the day.

The greatest impacts from this storm are expected to occur during a several-hour period from mid-afternoon Sunday into late Sunday evening for the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, southward to the Sandias/Manzanos, eastward to Raton Pass and Santa Rosa.

This includes Interstate 25 from the Glorieta Pass to the Colorado border and Interstate 40 east of Tijeras Canyon. The combination of a potentially intense burst of snowfall blowing snow and frigid temperatures will create hazardous travel and reduced visibilities in this area. Temperatures and wind chill values Monday morning will be the coldest so far this season.

Check LAMonitor.com for the latest in storm watches, warnings and travel advisories.