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Thu, Oct. 17

Wet weather ahead: Storm could last through weekend

The Daily Courier, file

The Daily Courier, file

A Pacific storm system will bring widespread showers to northern Arizona the rest of this week, the National Weather Service is forecasting.

The heaviest rain is likely to fall Friday and early Saturday in Yavapai County, said David Blanchard with the Weather Service office in Flagstaff.

The storm will grow increasingly cold and snow levels could drop to 6,000 feet by Sunday, Blanchard said. So the higher-elevation areas on the south side of Prescott could get some of the white stuff.

Higher-elevation roads could be covered with snow by Saturday morning, Weather Service officials cautioned.

Extreme eastern Yavapai County and the Payson region could see the most rain in northern Arizona from this system, Blanchard said.

Prescott's forecast by Wednesday night was calling for a 90 percent chance of rain today, 80 percent chance tonight, 90 percent chance Friday, 80 percent chance Friday night, 70 percent chance Saturday, 40 percent chance Saturday night, chance of showers Sunday, and slight chance of showers Sunday night.

High temperatures for Prescott are supposed to hit 54 degrees today and drop to 51 by Sunday, with the low of 40 today dropping to 31 by Sunday night.

That's about 10 degrees cooler than the first part of the week.

The forecast was still tricky Wednesday because the system is a cut-off low that can stagnate over areas for extended periods of time, Blanchard said.

The region can use the moisture as most of it remains in an extended drought, including all of Yavapai County except the eastern portion.

So far this month, Prescott's official Sundog measuring site on the northeast side of the city has recorded only 0.14 inches of rain. The long-term average is 1.22 inches.

Prescott hasn't seen above-average monthly rainfall since July.

Follow Joanna Dodder on Twitter @joannadodder.

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