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Colorado mountains brace for snow and high wind gusts

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VAIL, Colorado — The calendar may say it's the fall season, but the weatherman says it's time to brace for some wintery weather in Colorado.

The National Weather Service issued a winter weather advisory Sunday for the Park, Gore and Elk mountains and central mountain valleys, with up to 8 inches of snow expected and winds gusting to 40 miles an hour.

It was snowing in the mountains Sunday afternoon, with about 3 inches already on the ground in Breckenridge and Fairplay.

Weather can be fickle this time of year, especially in the Colorado mountains, and people need to be ready, National Weather Service meteorologist Jim Kalina said. It is also the beginning of the hunting season.

"Weather can change quickly," he said.

Several accidents and snowy conditions closed Interstate-70 at the Eisenhower Tunnel for a short time on Sunday.

Colorado Department of Transportation traffic manager Brian Jordon said traffic in both directions was shut down off and on at the tunnel because of fender-benders and spinouts.

Hoosier Pass near Frisco was also shut down briefly because of accidents and bad weather.

Forecasters said some areas of the Front Range above 9,000 feet could see up to 8 inches of snow, along with gusty winds.

On the eastern plains, high winds and thunderstorms were forecast.

Kalina said most of the bad weather should be gone by Monday.

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