DENVER (CBS4) – If you plan to travel across the northern or central mountains of Colorado this weekend you will want to keep up with the latest weather and road conditions. That’s because more wind and blowing snow is in the forecast through early Sunday.

As of 9 a.m. Saturday the following roads and mountain passes were closed due to the conditions…

  • Highway 285 between Fairplay and Kenosha Pass
  • U.S. 6 over Loveland Pass

Stuck traffic on the Steamboat Springs side of Rabbit Ears Pass early Saturday. (credit: Shannon Lukens)

There was a brief closure on Highway 40 between Kremmling and Steamboat Springs right after sunrise on Saturday due to problems getting over Rabbit Ears Pass. CDOT tweeted that route reopened just after 9 a.m. but there could be intermittent problems all weekend as the wind continues and more snow moves in by tonight.

A powerful jet stream roaring over Colorado is responsible for the rough conditions in the high country. The wind gusts may become even stronger after sunset on Saturday. Some places along and near the Continental Divide could experience wind gusts approaching 75 mph tonight.

The wind will cause widespread problems with blowing snow, either creating ground blizzards from old snow on the ground or white-out conditions with new snow falling from the next round of moisture.

Over the next 24 hours the highest totals will come from the mountains around Steamboat Springs and Rocky Mountain National Park. Areas north of Highway 50 and south of Highway 40 could see up to 4 inches of new snow.

The wind and snow will keep the avalanche danger rated very high over the next 36 hours. The Colorado Avalanche Information Center is highly discouraging people from traveling into the backcountry of the northern and central mountains this weekend.

Chris Spears