NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – An active week of weather is on the way for New Mexico as a couple of storm systems will bring strong winds, rain, and snow to parts of the state through Friday. A backdoor cold front last night has brought much colder temperatures to eastern New Mexico Monday. Some of that cooler air has also spilled into the Rio Grande Valley. Warmer weather will return to the eastern half of the state Tuesday as westerly winds will increase. Meanwhile, starting tonight across northwest New Mexico and southwest Colorado, rain and mountain snow will begin to develop tonight through Tuesday afternoon. Another round of light rain and mountain snow will be possible Wednesday as the winds stay strong in eastern New Mexico.
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A stronger storm system arrives into New Mexico on Thursday that will begin to crank up the winds Thursday afternoon. As the storm system arrives, rain and snow will move in from west to east. A Pacific cold front will sweep across the state by Friday morning, leaving much cooler weather behind. Very strong winds develop by Friday morning with gusts over 60 mph possible in parts of eastern New Mexico and over 45 mph in the western half of the state.
Rain and snow will begin in western New Mexico Thursday afternoon. Initially, rain will fall in the lower elevations and snow will fall mainly above 8,500′. Rain and snow will push east into the Rio Grande Valley after midnight Friday morning, with a strong cold front dropping the snow level down to 6,500′. Only rain is in the forecast for the Albuquerque metro. Santa Fe could see some light snow early Friday morning. There may be a few travel issues by Friday morning too, but mainly along with high mountain passes in northern and western New Mexico, where several inches of snow will fall. Snow will be windblown Friday morning, reducing visibility. Much of eastern New Mexico will remain dry, with the exception of the central mountain chain and a chance for light rain and snow along the I-25 corridor in northeastern New Mexico.