Lookin for a little Irish Luck

Sunday, March 17, 2013 at 9:14 am

Sunday’s have been good to us this year with several Sunday Funday powder days.  Today is not going to be one of them, but a grazing system will provide enough lift for snow showers today in the high elevations with a few inches possible by day’s end.

We then clear out ahead of the next system for late Wednesday and Thursday.  This system has two parts to it–an undercutting Low with plenty of moisture but lacking dynamics and a second Low dropping down from the Gulf of AK that has better dynamics but less moisture.  Often time these low pressure systems can combine to good effect to bring major snowfall to the Wasatch.  However, right now it’s looking like the timing is not quite right.  We’ll have the warmer, moist system move in a bit too early before the cold pool arrives to aid with dynamics.  With that being said, I still think the mountains of Northern Utah stand to see at least a moderate storm snowfall event.  My early rough estimate would put accumulations at 5-10″ on Wednesday and Thursday with possibly more if we can get everything working for us.

After this system moves out on Friday, the models have now diverged significantly again which leads to very little confidence.  At this point, the GFS keeps a moist northwest flow in place with the possibility for another grazing system or two early next week before sagging the jet south again and opening the door for potentially bigger storms by the end of the month.  The Euro cuts off the low after it moves through the area and hangs it over approximately Wyoming for a couple days next weekend before it finally kicks it east next week and builds a ridge.

If you remember from February, the MJO approached and quickly moved through the favorable phases of 1,2,3,4 in about ten days.  Those ten days, however, feature three decent systems and 2-4 feet of fresh snow at the end of February.  Whether or not that was a direct result of the MJO is impossible to determine, but we stormed up and then dried out again like clockwork as we moved through and then out of those phases.  Well, the MJO is moving into Phase 8 again right now, which means phases 1-4 are just around the corner.  We also have a favorably -PNA which is conducive to west coast troughing.

At the beginning of March, I had a post titled “Make or Break March” that essentially stated that if we could have a good month, we could still salvage an average season. But if we didn’t have a good March, it would be almost impossible to recover in April.  Well, we all now know how that turned out and even if the models really start to come around to the GFS’s current idea of storms by the end of the month, it will definitely be too little too late.  That doesn’t mean, however, that we still can’t have some good skiing and powder days before the lifts stop turning.   Also, a season that is 80% of normal is far better than 60% of normal, so keep the good thoughts coming and let’s hope we can get some Irish Luck into Utah.

WSF





14 thoughts on “Lookin for a little Irish Luck

  1. Anonymous

    WSF, Have you ever seen a March this bad. This season has seemed to get worse as time progresses!!!!! Very frustrating. What are the chances of not seeing any snow from the mid-week system?

  2. Steve

    NWS saying 3-6 inches for Wednesday-Thursday storm. If you can call it a storm. Probably be 1-3 by time it gets here. Unbelievable. Every freaking storm is the same story.

    1. Anonymous

      Steve, I share your frustration. I will be surprised if it is 1-3. With the way things have gone, I am thinking flurries at best!

    2. Anonymous

      Skiers can no longer depend upon the Wasatch for big snow and good skiing. The last two seasons are the beginning if the end. Its sad that the skiing is in New England is better than in the Wasatch. Alta and Snowbird should be embarrassed!

  3. Steve

    Every season is different. The last two have been bad, but two or three before that were great. Who knows about next season.

      1. Anonymous

        Thanks WSF. Is the midweek storm still looking decent? I am returning home to Utah after three weeks and looking hoping for some good turns.

      2. Anonymous

        WSF,
        Thanks! Why has it been so difficult to get any snow going lately? This March seems to be among the worst I can remember.

  4. Anonymous

    “Its sad that the skiing is in New England is better than in the Wasatch. Alta and Snowbird should be embarrassed!”

    Probably the dumbest comment I’ve ever read on the internet. Do everyone a favor and cease to exist in Utah and never come here again. Go back east and live there where the skiing is better and we dont have to be embarrassed of Alta and Snowbird.

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