The old mantra rings true today: Northwest flow is King! We knew a few snow showers were likely today, but as is often the case, the northwest flow surprised us all and it snowed steadily from about 9 am until 3 pm in the Cottonwoods with accumulations ranging from 3 to 6″. Great skiing was had all over. Reports of snow all day in the Western Uintas too!
Snow showers should continue off and on this evening, then dwindle overnight. Tomorrow there will surely be some pow caches leftover if you want to get a few turns in before the game, or take advantage of the empty mountains in the afternoon.
It looks like an exciting pattern is setting up for us… the Tuesday system continues to look better… I’ll give the models until tomorrow before I officially boost the forecasted amounts, but at this time it looks like we might get more than the 3-6″ mentioned this morning. The next system for late in the week is also looking much better. Latest runs of the GFS and Euro have the best precip now over Northern Utah rather than Southern Utah and Arizona. Too early to guess amounts, but this is a good sign. Finally, next weekend’s potential system is also looking like it will dig deep enough to bring us a good shot for snow. Beyond that, it looks like a continuation of more storms is possible. Overall, lots of good news today… Stoke levels are high in Utah. Full details tomorrow AM… WSF
Another weak impulse will bring the threat of a few additional snow showers to northern Utah today. Accumulations should be light. Next system moves in Tuesday morning with more chances for snow later next week.
An active weather pattern continues to exist over the West. Unfortunately, most of the systems in the pattern right now are relatively weak. We are left with the cold air and just chance for snow here and there. Yesterday we had a weak wave of energy move through that did little more than keep clouds around and produce a few very light snow showers. Today, we have a slightly stronger impulse that will bring the threat of a few light snow showers to the Wasatch. At this time, it looks like accumulations at best will just be an inch or two.
A break on Sunday and Monday before the next system moves in on Monday night into Tuesday. This system is well defined in all models currently but isn’t overly strong in any of them. It’ll drop into the area and bring a reinforcing shot of cold air and perhaps 3-6″ of snow in the high Wasatch — enough for some soft turns.
Late Thursday into Friday, another weak cold front will drop south and combine with low pressure spinning to our south. When the cold front interacts with the energy for the low pressure system, it should strengthen. Right now, most models have the majority of the precipitation falling south of us. However, it is possible that we could see some accumulating snowfall if the cold front strengthened farther north and/or the low pressure system then tracked near enough to us. We’ll have to watch that over the next few days.
Next weekend, the EC, GFS, and GEM all have a more zonal flow developing again (west to east storm track). They all show a system moving into the West coast on Saturday and reaching Utah by late on Sunday. Right now, the only concern is that the best energy from the systems will get pushed north of us by high pressure that will be trying to strengthen to our south. This far out, it’s hard to have confidence in any solution, so I’ll just have to keep you updated.
To recap: While nothing appears “major” at this time, we have 4 shots for snow in the next 9 days. A weak impulse today that could bring an inch or two. A stronger system for Tuesday that could drop 3-6″. Another system on Friday that will likely favor Southern Utah. And finally, a potentially strong system that will be moving into the west coast next weekend.
Models are actually fairly consistent in the long range right now. The general trend is to pump up a ridge over the Aleutian Islands, this would create a deep trough over the Gulf of AK and the Eastern Pacific. This deep trough off the West coast would actually likely force ridging over Utah. However, the hope would be that eventually this deep trough would progress inland and bring us some larger storms. This is a pattern we haven’t seen too often over the last two years. As a weather geek, it’ll be fun to watch this pattern evolve, and hopefully it will work out well for us.
P.S. I wish the snow stakes in Utah were this high quality and we could do this with every storm….