A moist northwest flow kept snow showers going for much of the night in the Wasatch. It took a lot longer than expected, but eventually this storm delivered. A chance for a few more morning snow showers before clearing later today. Should be a great ski day with many mountains opening terrain that spend much of the weekend on wind hold.
Storm totals since Saturday night are highly varied, but generally look like this:
- Snowbasin, Solitude, Canyons: 7″
- Snowbird, Alta, Brighton, Deer Valley, PCMR, Beaver Mountain, PowMow: 13-16″
These numbers might seem strange to you, but it’s actually fairly common in storms that have long orographic periods. Certain areas are favored by certain flows and will see snow all day while other areas see very little. Very hard to predict which areas will see more snow before the event.
Overall, the 5 day period yielded anywhere from 20-45″ of snow for the Wasatch which is quite good. If it weren’t for the gusty winds and short period of riming on Friday night, it would have been an epic powder week.
Personally, I had a great ski day yesterday. Despite the relentless wind, I was able to find protected areas and deposits that were over a foot deep and kept refilling throughout the day as more snow got blow into them. Unfortunately, it seems to have tipped the scales with a cold I’ve been fighting for the past two weeks and I woke up this morning feeling awful. Looks like I’ll have plenty of time to get over it before our next chance of snow . . .
There is no good news in the long range. Ridge over the west coast will firmly re-establish itself for dry weather for the next week with valley inversions returning in full strength. There are a few small chances that we could get clipped by weak systems next week, but they look to provide little more than clouds and a few breezes. I can usually find at least some hope by looking at some long-range control runs or teleconnection indices, but right now I’m struggling to find anything that suggests a pattern shift before the end of the month. In an ENSO neutral year like this one, I look to the MJO to be a driving force in forcing troughs in the west coast. So far this season, it’s been dead. Not strong enough to even register as “in a phase”. For the past few weeks it has been forecasted to strengthen and move into Phases 6 and 7 (not good phases for us, but still at least it could propagate into good phases). Unfortunately, that never comes to fruition and until it does finally strengthen, I fear changing the large-scale pattern will be difficult. Time for superstitions again ….