PARK CITY, Utah – A fresh round of snow blankets the amber-colored fall foliage in Utah's first October scene.
On Monday, Park City experienced the collision of autumn and winter as the first fall storm brought snow to the western region. The snowfall has continued into Tuesday, with the heaviest amounts occurring in the mountains of Wyoming, northern Utah, and Colorado due to the low-pressure system.
"A wonderful blend of colorful, fall foliage with a fresh, white snowfall," the Utah Department of Natural Resources said. "Utah's pretty good at this, don't you think?"
Nathan Spight, who was visiting Utah from Alabama for the first time, spoke to FOX 13 in Salt Lake City about the rare sight he was seeing.
"I didn't think I was going to see any snow this early," he said. "You go to the bottom of the mountains, you still get to see all the fall colors, and then up here is like all winter colors and stuff."
Ski resort operators celebrating
Ski resort operators were excited as snow covered Lake Solitude in the Big Cottonwood Canyon. A video posted by Solitude Mountain Resort on social media shows snowflakes falling on trees.
"It’s a winter wonderland at Lake Solitude right now!" said the resort, which is scheduled to open for winter on Nov. 17.
"After last season's record-breaking 838 inches of snow, our snowstake needed some love," Snowbird said. "Last week, our teams went out to repair it just in time to record the first 6 inches of snow for 2023-24 season."
As people enjoy skiing and sledding in the early snow, it's important to remember that the snow also serves as a signal for the Utah Department of Transportation that winter is approaching.
"It was just a while ago we were cleaning up avalanches in Little Cottonwood Canyon, and now we had a hot summer, and now we're back at it," said Jake Brown, a supervisor for UDOT's Region Two. "Every once in a while you get a freak storm that comes through, but nothing to be panicked about, you know, really wet snow."
On Tuesday, partly cloudy skies are expected in southern Utah while northern Utah will see scattered rain showers and snow above 8,500 feet.
"It's that surface trough which is allowing for a whole lot of cooler Canadian air to really just pour into the region," FOX Weather meteorologist Michael Estime said. "You get that cold Canadian air mixing with some moisture and what do you get? You get the rain, you get the showers, you get the thunderstorms, but you also in the highest of elevations get that snow."
The same system is also expected to bring heavy rain and severe storms to the Plains, along with a significant decrease in temperature.
Meanwhile, the National Weather Service anticipates a drying and warming trend to begin across Utah and southwest Wyoming on Wednesday.