NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – Temperatures are warming rapidly this early afternoon. We’re already seeing 70° in parts of the southeast corner. We’re also beginning to see some higher clouds spread east as highs hover 10-15° above average. But the closer we get to Christmas Eve, the more violent our weather will become. This means wind speeds will continue climbing through Friday with gusts toppling 60-65 mph across the central and south-central mountains at that time This may affect travel! Before the storms arrives, Wednesday will feature mainly sunny skies with highs in the middle 50s for Albuquerque, Rio Rancho, and Socorro and upper 60s into the lower 70s east.

Forecast Continues Below

By Thursday, we’ll see increasing clouds from northwest to southeast as we go through the day. Light rain and snow showers will begin developing after dark for the northwest highlands. Meanwhile, heavier snow will begin for the San Juan and Rocky Mountains. Parts of Colorado could see 12-18″ from this storm. For the majority of us in New Mexico, we’ll keep our snow totals in the 3-6″ range for the northern mountains/ski resorts. The heaviest rain will fall west of I-25 and especially west of the Continental Divide. Additionally, we’ll have record heat in the east where Roswell will break its Christmas Eve record high! So this drastic contrast will set up potentially damaging wind gusts. We stay breezy into Christmas Day as temperatures cool slightly with some leftover isolated showers.