Weekend storm expected to drop snow across northern Arizona

A storm is expected to drop snow across a wide swath of northern Arizona this weekend.

The National Weather Service said snow will begin to accumulate on the afternoon of Feb. 13 and continue through Sunday evening.

Snowfall amounts expected Saturday through Sunday include up to 3 inches (7 centimeters) at the South Rim of the Grand Canyon, up to 5 inches (13 centimeters) in Flagstaff and Show Low and up to 4 inches (10 centimeters) at Window Rock.

The weather service said up to 12 inches (30 centimeters) of snow are possible in the White Mountains.


Road Conditions

Call 511 anywhere in Arizona or 1-888-411-ROAD (7623)


Leave prepared before heading north

Due to forecasted snow in the high country, the Arizona Department of Transportation is reminding drivers who are heading north to never park along highways to play in the snow. 

Use the highway shoulders for emergencies only. Parking on them to play in the snow is hazardous in the following ways:

  • Other drivers may be distracted by your vehicle.
  • Other drivers may pull over as well to play in the snow, compounding the problem.
  • Your vehicle may interfere with first responders who need to use the shoulder.
  • Plows can throw snow and ice far off highways.
  • It’s much safer to re-enter highways from on-ramps and other designated entrances

"Also, it’s not uncommon for lots of desert dwellers to take the opportunity to head north to play in the snow. So, remember to pack your patience and expect to spend extended time in your vehicle getting to and from snow play areas."

ADOT's suggestions for items to take along:

  • Warm clothing and blankets
  • A fully charged mobile phone and charger
  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • Drinking water
  • Healthy snacks
  • First-aid kit and necessary medications
  • Ice scraper
  • Small bag of sand or kitty litter for wheel traction
  • Small folding shovel for snow removal
  • Travel tool kit and battery cables
  • Safety flares
  • Plastic bags or containers for sanitation
  • Road map(s)

ADOT says you and your vehicle must be prepared for driving in wintry conditions, including snow, ice and freezing temperatures.

  • Get plenty of rest
  • Plan your route in advance and notify someone about your route, destination and arrival time
  • Take frequent breaks from driving
  • Make sure your fuel tank is at least half to three-quarters full at all times
  • Use snow tires, chains or studded tires as recommended or required. Studded tires are permitted on Arizona highways from Oct. 1 to May 1.
  • Ensure your wipers, window defroster, headlights, taillights, brake lights and turn signals work
  • Change your motor oil to a winter grade
  • For electric or hybrid vehicles, be sure the battery has sufficient voltage and the connection cables are tight

Get more safety tips at https://azdot.gov/KnowSnow

For Flagstaff area snow-play locations, see FlagstaffArizona.org's Winter Recreation Map or call 844-256-SNOW.

You can check the latest weather conditions by visiting the FOX 10 Phoenix weather page, or download the Free FOX 10 Weather app, which is available on Apple iOS and Android.