The wait continues…

Monday, October 13, 2014 at 9:22 am

Wednesday update:

Nothing new to report.  We have three systems that will move into the west coast over the next 8 days or so.  None of which look likely to bring much precipitation (if any) to Utah.  The first is moving north of the area today and tomorrow.  Northern Utah will see breezy conditions and some clouds, but nothing in the way of precipitation.   The next system moves in this weekend but it will shear apart as it moves onshore.  Again, nothing for us but some clouds and breezes.  The third system moves in around Tuesday of next week.  This one may hold together well enough to bring a few light showers to Utah next Wednesday.  At this point, anything we do get will be light with relatively high snow levels.

Beyond middle of next week, the EC and GFS generally both ridge us back up.  The only ray of hope is that both models currently favor troughing over the west coast for the last few days of October.  As mentioned before, not seeing much snow in October shouldn’t be a cause for concern.  Not much correlation between October snowfall and total snowfall for the rest of the season…  However, it would be nice to start painting the high elevations with a permanent coat of white.



Storm track brings rain and snow to Pacific Northwest but Utah remains dry for at least a week (probably longer).  Perhaps stormier weather for the end of October…


Yesterday we saw a cold front move through Northern Utah, dropping temperatures and firing up some high elevation snow showers.  Amounts above 8,000 feet ranged from a trace to 4″.  The highest amounts, as expected, were found on the northwest slopes of the Uintas.

The cool down is short-lived as high pressure is already building across the Rocky Mountain region.  The next few days we will see a deep trough dig off the Pacific Northwest coast.  Rain and snow likely for Oregon and Washington.  Unfortunately, high pressure will force virtually all precip northeast into Montana and southern BC and Alberta.  This pattern is a stubborn one that looks unlikely to budge for some time.  Here is the forecasted precip for the western US over the next 10 days:



You can see that we remain high and dry.  A few of the fronts will brush us and perhaps increase clouds and breezes from time to time with slight cool downs, but precip looks extremely unlikely.

Long Range:

The GFS and Euro are both keeping precip out of the area for at least 10 days.  During the last week of October, we could see the trough off the west coast finally progress inland and bring us a chance for storms.  But this is too far out to say with any confidence whatsoever.  What we do have is an MJO that is forecasted to strengthen and move into favorable phases over the next two weeks…. a good sign.

I know many of you are itching for snow.  I’m certainly ready.  But remember that it’s very rare that we see more than a foot or two during October, so even if we didn’t see another flake for the rest of the month, we really wouldn’t be much behind normal at all.  Also, for backcountry stability, waiting for late October or early November to start base building is ideal.

Better to see high pressure in October than in January…


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  • J

    “Better to see high pressure in October than in January…”

    • Faceplant

      Some of my best seasons were warm and dry til mid November. Then the switch flipped and didn’t stop for months. Hoping for that this year.

  • Matt

    Open the faucet Halloween weekend and don’t let it stop!

    • Ben

      More like Thanksgiving weekend. 6 more weeks of Indian Summer!

  • Kassie

    Are ridges right now foreshadowing another winter of ridges keeping moisture away from us, or just normal?