DENVER (CBS4) – The dry weather we’ve had over the past several weeks prompted a Red Flag Warning for high fire danger in parts of Colorado. The southeastern and east-central parts of our state have the biggest risk for wildfire. Expect wind gusts to 30mph, low relative humidity, and dry vegetation.

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Although the high country is not included in the Red Flag area, this is where the fastest winds will be found. Right now the jet stream is carving a large trough of low pressure over the states of Oregon, Washington, and California.

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Over the next 72 hours, this low pressure will strengthen and cause the upper level winds to increase. That puts our front range mountains right in line with westerly winds ranging from 30-50mph, generally north of I-70. The highest gusts will occur above treeline and away from most cities, although places like Nederland, Estes Park, and Black Hawk may get fairly windy. Since this system will be more of a weather-maker for Montana, Idaho, and Wyoming, Colorado won’t get much moisture.

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A surface cold front drops through Denver on Thursday afternoon. This will bring our temps into the lower 70s, some 20 degrees cooler than Monday’s high of 91. The extended forecast continues on the dry side this weekend and next week. Good news for barbecues, bad news for fire danger. We’ll watch out for a change in the pattern, but for now enjoy the last official days of summer.

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Justin McHeffey provides nightly reports from the Mobile Weather Lab. He travels Colorado in search of Mother Nature’s most powerful and beautiful conditions. Like his Facebook page Meteorologist Justin McHeffey and follow him on Twitter @WeatherMcHeffey.