Coolest day of autumn so far on Monday with freezing temperatures likely tonight. Calm weather through Friday before a stronger storm for the upcoming weekend. Snow likely in the mountains!
Our storm system yesterday has moved through the area entirely. It was a weak one and if you blinked you missed it. Just saw a few snow showers up high with a dusting at best in a few select locales. What we are left with in its wake is colder air. Temps today (Monday) will actually be slightly below normal which hasn’t happened much over the past month. Low temperatures tonight will drop below freezing at elevation and likely below freezing for most of the Wasatch Front as well. Time to cover or pull in tender vegetation!
The rest of the work week will see calm conditions with temps moderating back above normal, culminating in a very warm Friday ahead of an upcoming trough for the weekend.
This next trough continues to look good in all models. It will drop down off the Oregon and eventually California coast before tracking inland. Models currently take the Low pressure center right over Northern Utah, which would be ideal. In this scenario, snow would develop in the mountains during the day on Saturday and continue Saturday night before tapering off by Sunday. Here is a map of model QPF for this system:
This puts down over an inch of liquid for much of the northern and central Wasatch, which would equate to up to a foot of snow. Of course, this is currently a best case scenario with regards to the track of this low. There is plenty of time for things to change and the Low could end up dropping farther south or lifting farther north than currently anticipated. Remember, yesterday’s system was looking good five days out before models changed their minds. What we do know for sure is that the mountains of Utah should get a new paint job next week.
This system will also usher in much colder air. This time of year is premium for lake effect snow. We’ll have to watch for the possibility of that behind the system. Lake effect is difficult to forecast more than 24 hours out, so no point worrying about it now. Right now it does NOT look like we’ll have the prolonged northwest flow necessary for good lake effect.
Next week, it looks like a ridge is progged to take control for a few days at least. Long range ensembles still favoring a return to troughs and hopefully storms by about November 9. Let’s hope we can keep a progressive and snowy pattern going as we head toward opening day…
For those of you wondering about El Nino — it’s still there. Currently we are in a very weak El Nino state and forecasts are for it to gradually strengthen. At best it will make it to marginally moderate strength by mid-winter. Thus, it shouldn’t have too much impact on our weather other than to give a slightly better shot at snowfall to far southern Utah.