Salt Lake City's forecast high for Thursday was just 19 degrees.
The extreme cold complicated emergency crews' work in putting out an early Thursday morning semi-trailer fire on northbound Interstate 15 than closed down the ramp to westbound Interstate 80 for several hours.
Utah Highway Patrol Sgt. Todd Royce said both drivers of the truck, which was hauling a trailer load of wooden cabinets out of California, were unhurt. However, the big rig and its load were a total loss.
Troopers believe the fire started in the semi's braking system about 3 a.m. The blaze was put out, but the water poured on the blaze by firefighters froze on the roadway, making travel even more dangerous through the scene. Utah Department of Transportation crews applied road salt to melt the ice.
Friday's forecast called for more of the same, cold comfort indeed. Under cloudy skies bringing only a slight chance of new snow, the Wasatch Front generally looked for no better than the low-20s for daytime highs, while the mercury was to dip into the low-teens overnight.
Higher up, in the Wasatch Mountain valleys nestling Park City, Heber and Huntsville, it was even colder. Friday's forecast called for highs of 10-15 degrees with thermometers retreating to zero overnight. The National Weather Service said there was a 30 percent chance of snow showers for the region.
The Wasatch Range north of I-80, the state's ice box and home to the towns of Woodruff, Randolph and Bear River, looked for highs Friday of 10-15 degrees with overnight lows of minus 5.
Southwestern Utah's highs Friday were pegged in the mid-30s with overnight lows of 15-20 degrees.
The Utah Avalanche Center's initial risk ratings for potentially deadly backcountry snowslides were elevated to "considerable" for the Uintas and "moderate" for the rest of the state's mountains.
For more extensive forecast breakdowns, visit The Salt Lake Tribune's weather page at www.sltrib.com/weather.