Snow arriving in Idaho mountains, but hard frost still a ways off here

There’s snow Monday on some peaks in Idaho — a good reminder that it’s time to start preparing for winter driving.

An Idaho Transportation Department camera shows snow at Smiley Creek in the Sawtooths. The National Weather Service said drivers on Idaho 21 might encounter snow today east of Banner Summit. Snow levels are at about 7,000 feet.

National Weather Service forecasters say about an inch has fallen at Banner Summit. That’s an estimate based on the water equivalent recorded at the site.

Dave Groenert, a meteorologist at the Weather Service, said overnight lows at Banner Summit have been in the mid-20s. So drivers should be cautious about snow that melts during the day, creating icy road conditions at night.

Those traveling on Idaho Highway 75 between Stanley and Sun Valley should be prepared for snow and ice at Galena Summit.

There’s no snow at Bogus Basin yet, according to cameras at the ski area. The temperature Monday is around 39 degrees.

Moeller, Katy - Boise

Gardeners in the Treasure Valley who are concerned about sensitive plants don’t have too much to worry about this week, unless they’re in one of the cold pockets of the Valley.

The average first freeze for Boise is Oct. 10. The average first hard freeze (below 32 degrees) is Oct. 23, according to the Weather Service.

Lows this week in the Valley will be around 38 to 42, Groenert said. The forecast for next week looks moderate too — nothing to indicate that it’s going to get too cold.

Check the images attached to this post for the Weather Service’s handy-dandy chart for freeze dates in the Treasure Valley.

Katy Moeller: 208-377-6413, @KatyMoeller