Not too much going on with this system…. Looks like we’ll get skunked for the most part…
Monday PM update:
Not too much new to talk about this evening as everything still looks good in the forecast from this morning. Still expect 3-6″ in the Wasatch with 4-8″ in places like the Cottonwoods that are favored by a northwesterly flow. If anything, today’s 18z NAM and GFS looked slightly better so I’m feeling fairly confident in this forecast. Snow should peak overnight and then gradually lighten up tomorrow morning. Some frosting on an already soft base will make for another great day tomorrow. Sometimes these type of storms can be sleepers that bring more snow than expected, so let’s cross our fingers. Ridging still forecast to develop later this week, but models still suggest active weather returning for the second week of March. We’ll see . . . WSF
Skiing was clearly en vogue yesterday as the lines to get up the Cottonwoods were as long as they’ve ever been. I was able to sneak up LCC relatively early and had a great day at Snowbird, never waiting in a lift line for more than 10 minutes or so, despite the crowds. Lots of reports of great conditions all over the Wasatch, especially from Snowbasin, where 27″ of snow fell over the weekend! Today is a great day for touring as the snow has had time to settle to help mitigate avalanche danger and is still in excellent condition.
Today we’ll see clouds gradually increase throughout the day as the next system approaches the area. Breezes will also develop along the ridges. The system for tonight still looks fairly weak. It has two factors working against it–a lack of any significant moisture tap, and its fast movement. The system will arrive late this evening between approximately 8 PM-12 AM, moving in the from the northwest. Snow will develop along the front but will turn showery very quickly and should clear out for the most part tomorrow morning. The system should only be good for about 2-5″ in most of the Wasatch. The Cottonwoods, however, are favored by the northwest flow and could benefit from a bit of lake enhancement behind the front. Therefore, I think 4-8″ will be possible up the canyons. For those of you that have been hoping for more out of this system, keep in mind that it will at least be falling on a soft, fresh base… so it could ski a bit deeper that it actually is. If you’re willing to “earn your turns”, you’ll experience the same goods we all enjoyed this weekend.
On Thursday, another system will brush far northern Utah. At best, I just see a few light snow showers for the Northern Wasatch from this feature. Ridging will build for the upcoming weekend into next week and temperatures will start to warm. The good news is that this does not appear to be the super dominant ridging that we’ve seen for much of the past two months. Both major global models indicate a chance for a weak system around the 4th of March and potentially stronger systems the following weekend. Don’t hang your hats on this forecast quite yet, as its too far out to be sure of anything…but it is certainly worth noting.
Hopefully tonight’s system comes in a bit stronger than currently anticipated. I could go for another day playing in the fluff tomorrow. On Wednesday, I’ll sum up the month of February and take a look at the snowpack numbers, as well as take a look at the teleconnections and the long-range CFSv2 forecasts.