Large flakes floating through the air and settling on the grass in mid-April may seem surreal in Boise, but “it’s not out of the realm,” National Weather Service meteorologist Korri Anderson said.
"We usually have on average one day of measurable snow a year in April," Anderson said, noting that 4 inches of snow fell in Boise on May 2, 1964. One year, he said, “we had mixed rain and snow on June 10.”
As for measurable snow — defined as 0.1 inch or more — the weather service office at the Boise Airport hadn’t met that mark by late morning and didn’t expect to reach it before flakes faded to raindrops.
Friday’s flurries started about 9 in Boise and a half hour or so earlier in Caldwell and parts west, he said. Snow is expected to turn to rain — plus graupel and possibly thunder — in the Valley by the afternoon, but higher-elevation neighborhoods such as Hidden Springs may see snow flurries through the afternoon.
The snow accompanied a cold system moving into the Valley, headed northeast, Anderson said. Temperatures dropped from 40 degrees at 8 a.m. to around freezing as the system moved through, he said.
Valley rain and mountain snow are expected to continue through Friday, with warmer, dryer conditions Saturday and Sunday, he said. Boise’s high temperature Saturday is expected to hit the mid-50s Saturday and the mid-60s on Easter Sunday, he said, with more rain not expected until late Sunday afternoon. More precipitation systems are expected Monday and Tuesday, he said.
The additional precipitation may eventually only worsen the current flooding on the Boise River as the National Weather Service reported that precipitation in 2017 was well above what is normal in the state. As of Friday evening, flows at the Glenwood Bridge in Boise were at more than 8,600 cubic feet per second. That level puts both Canyon and Ada counties in a flood warning from the weather service.
The majority of the Greenbelt was closed Friday due to flooding and Idaho Power warned residents to stay away from flooded areas.
Residents were asked to call Idaho Power at 1-800-488-6151 or within the Treasure Valley at 208-388-2323 if they see submerged electrical boxes. The company also warned that if patrolman deem an area unsafe, there may be temporary power outages for nearby customers.
Statesman reporter Ruth Brown contributed to this report.