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Western Fall Storm: Southwest Monsoon

A fall storm will bring widespread rains, gusty winds, and high elevation snow to the Northwest. Gusty winds ahead of the front will produce critical fire weather threats for portions of the Great Basin, northern Rockies, and Front Range. Locally heavy monsoon rains may produce flash flooding in the Southwest. Strong storms are possible in the Great Lakes into the Northeast. Read More >


A potent cold front swept through the region on the late afternoon and evening of Wednesday, January 13th, 2021. Behind the front, northwesterly winds became very strong. Wednesday night through Thursday night, winds across the area were sustained at 35 to 50 mph, with gusts of 60 to more than 80 mph. In Harding County, a gust of 93 mph was measured with the frontal passage! Winds finally diminished Friday morning. Numerous rollovers were reported during this long duration high wind event, especially along I-90 across western South Dakota. Many homes and businesses sustained property damage, and several wind driven grass fires produced additional damage.

The image to the right shows the wind observations at the NWS office near downtown Rapid City for the duration of the high wind event.
NWS Rapid City Wind Observations
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