Ridge will retrograde westward just enough for some a weak system with limited moisture to drop into the area late Wednesday and again later in the weekend. Don’t expect much apart from a quick inch or two in the Wasatch at best. Still not too encouraging in the long range…. Detailed update this afternoon.
Area is now under dominant high pressure with sunny skies and warming temps…. inversions will start developing over the next couple days in the valleys. High pressure will continue through mid next week when a system will try to plow through the ridge but it looks like it will mostly fall apart before making it to Utah with little or no accumulations expected… After that models diverge a bit but at this time it doesn’t look like any major storms or pattern changes are likely until at least mid-month. There is still hope that the latter half of February could be snowy as we stated a few days ago in our Feb Outlook. Right now it’s just a waiting game to see how the models handle the blocking ridge and how the MJO, which is still forecasted to move into favorable phase 7, will affect our weather.
Stay tuned…. WSF
A weak system is rolling into the west coast and heading our direction currently with light snow starting in the mountains this evening. Snow should continue off and on tonight in the mountains with 3-6″ in the Cottonwoods and 1-4″ at Park City resorts. Tomorrow there will be some more fairly light snow showers in the wake of the front, decreasing in the afternoon. Should be a good ski day with at least a bit of fresh snow to soften up the base both off and on piste.
By Friday, all snow showers should be long gone to our southeast and we will start to ridge up. This is a very strong ridge over the entire western U.S. and will be extremely hard to break down. Earlier this week, the GFS in particular was showing potential undercutting of the ridge but it has since backed off almost completely from this idea. Any systems that approach the ridge are sheared apart before coming anywhere close to Utah. The MJO is progged to enter a favorable phase in the next week or so, and if you remember the graphic I posted a few days ago, it can take 7-10 days for the MJO to affect our weather. That would be sometime between 14-17 of Feb. Models aren’t showing this successfully occurring yet. But models often don’t pick up on pattern changes very well, especially with dominant ridges like this.
Right now I’m just looking for positive signs that the pattern might change back by mid-month, but it’s hard to find any conclusive proof of that actually occurring. We may just have to accept that this will be an extended period of dry weather.