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What to expect: Another winter storm bringing rain, snow to Arizona Friday

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Posted at 4:43 PM, Jan 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-29 18:07:52-05

PHOENIX — Our next storm is moving through Arizona on Friday, with more desert rain, more snow in the high country, gusty winds, and cooler air on tap.

LIVE RADAR: Track latest storm conditions around Arizona

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Friday is an ABC15 Weather Action Day because the afternoon and evening commutes will be the prime time for rain and thunderstorms in the Valley. We'll also see hazardous travel conditions across the high country by the afternoon and evening.

Take action now to get ready. Check your wiper blades, properly inflate your tires and allow extra time for your commute. If you are able to work from home, please do.


Phoenix could pick up another quarter of an inch of rain, with showers moving in after 1 p.m. Friday.

We could see higher rainfall totals where thunderstorms hit and any storms that move in could bring damaging winds, small hail, or even graupel (that hail/snow hybrid we saw earlier this week.)

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We'll also have to watch out for flooding in areas east of the Valley and over our wildfire burn scars.

A Flood Watch is in effect for Tonto Basin and Punkin Center.

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Snow levels will hover around 4,000 to 5,000 feet on Friday.

Winter Weather Advisories have been posted across parts of northern Arizona.

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We could pick up another four to six inches of snow in spots above 6,000 feet in elevation like Flagstaff and another one to three inches of snow is possible in areas like Payson and Prescott.

Winds will be stronger on Friday, too. So, blowing snow and brief white-out conditions are possible in the high country. You may need to postpone travel until Saturday when this storm clears out.


It will be a quick-moving storm and we'll be dry again by this weekend.

The rain and snow is welcomed news when it comes to drought conditions across Arizona and it has made some difference for parts of our state.

As of Thursday's update from the U.S. Drought Monitor, all of Arizona remains in a drought but the area covered by an Exceptional Drought (the worst kind) has dropped from 73% to 58% of the state.


We saw the greatest improvement in areas along the Mogollon Rim in central Arizona, where the bulk of the snow fell this week. Unfortunately, 93% of Arizona is still in the top two worst levels of drought, so we still have a long way to go.