This weekend kicks off the beginning of a cool, wet fall season

Sep 1, 2023, 1:30 PM

A trail on Neffs Canyon is pictured....

A hiker walks through the fall leaves in Neffs Canyon in Salt Lake City Sunday, Oct. 14, 2012. (Jeffrey D. Allred/Deseret News)

(Jeffrey D. Allred/Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — The meteorological fall season officially begins Friday, with months of cooler and wetter temperatures on the horizon.

“Last year we were still dealing with very hot triple-digit weather,” said Hayden Mahan, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

“It was very dry and we were still in a drought state-wide. Whereas this year, it’s basically the opposite.”

Mahan said the average high for this time of year is in the mid-to-upper 80s. This fall we’ll be sitting right around that average without any real chance of seeing temperatures in the triple digits for the rest of the year.

“Nothing is standing out that would suggest any more triple-digit days,” he explained. “And it’s very unlikely, especially after we get through the first week of September.”

There is no definite answer for why this fall is dramatically different than last year. However, Mahan suggested it could be due to the long, record-breaking winter the state just experienced.

“It seems like we are benefitting from the very wet winter that we had. And that sort of helped us remain in this cooler and wetter summer into fall pattern.”

Labor Day weekend

This weekend a cold front moves across the state, lowering temperatures to the mid-80s and mid-70s with heavy rainfall in some regions.

The front brings with it several flood and hazardous weather watches, warnings, and advisories according to the National Weather Service.

Cooler temperatures and precipitation may even bring snow to the state’s mountaintops.

“We could be seeing some of our first snowflakes falling Monday into Tuesday at our highest elevations,” said Mahan.

Snow will only be possible in elevations above 11,000 feet, which includes the peaks of several Wasatch mountains.

With these colder, rainy temperatures over the holiday weekend, Mahan said campers should bundle up and be ready for stormy conditions.

“We’re going to be experiencing some pretty widespread rainfall across northern Utah. So you’re going to want to take something that’s going to be able to keep yourself dry,” he suggested.

“It’s probably going to be a wet and muddy mess.”

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This weekend kicks off the beginning of a cool, wet fall season