Storm Day

Monday, January 12, 2015 at 6:56 am

5:30pm Update:

Wow! What a day it has been!  The Cottonwoods and PC got under a persistent band of snow this morning and it just kept coming at impressive rates.  Some areas were seeing 3″ per hour at times.  Check out Canyons piling it up today:



Looks like at least 14″ so far today there.  The Cottonwoods are closing in on a foot and a half! Areas farther north didn’t see this persistent heavy band so their snowfall has been more spotty, but still, they are falling in nicely with the original 6-12″ forecast.  Here is snowbasin showing 7″ or so by the end of the ski day, several more inches likely tonight!



Expect snowfall to continue tonight, gradually becoming more scattered in nature.  Another 3-6″ is likely, so storm totals could push 2 feet in a few areas.  Remember, this was all from as storm that 6 days ago looked like it would bring us virtually nothing.  That’s why I’m always urging people to “keep the faith”…. Long-range models may not look good, but they can change!




11am update:

Snow has been really coming down good this morning with totals of up to 6” being reported already! This storm has the look so far of another overachiever.  Check out the last two hours and Canyons:



Get some!



Snow will increase later this morning becoming steady and at times heavy this afternoon in the mountains of Northern Utah.  Precipitation will gradually spread south late today and tonight through the entire state with snow above 6,000 feet.  Mountain accumulations should be in the 6-12″ range with pockets of higher amounts possible.


Our storm is moving in right now with radar just to our north and west (as of 6:30am) showing plenty of returns:



All this precipitation will work into the area today with snow showers above 6,000 feet this morning becoming steadier and heavier by this afternoon as the front itself moves through.  Snow should continue in orographically enhanced areas through tonight.  Accumulations by Tuesday morning should be 6-12″ with up to 15″ possible in favored locations like the upper Cottonwoods.  Again, this is a last chair Monday, first chair Tuesday scenario.  It should be storm skiing/riding at places that offer night skiing as well tonight.

I called this a little bowling ball system a few times leading up to today, this map demonstrates that concept perfectly:



This QPF map shows the relatively narrow corridor that this bowling ball is taking from Northern Oregon and Washington state, heading southeast directly through Utah on it’s way to New Mexico.  The San Juans of southwestern Colorado should get nailed as well!  Strike!

After Tuesday we dry out and ridge up again for the rest of the work week.  Inversions should return.  By the weekend, moisture begins to stream into the area and showers are once again possible for the northern mountains.  The GFS has a decent system moving through on Sunday into Monday but the Euro, which at one point also had a fairly strong system, now shows us getting nothing more than a few scattered showers.  Instead, the Euro waits until late next Tuesday into Wednesday before dropping a system into the area.  With so much disagreement, there is no point speculating.  Let’s just wait until there is more model agreement and hope for the best.

Enjoy the next two days!


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36 thoughts on “Storm Day

  1. PC Bump Ryder

    Finally, snow on a weekday! For those of us that have to savor the scraps of tourists and weekend warriors, it’s about time we got our weekday gift. Enjoy the office and school tomorrow!

    1. brig

      Damn teachers. They shouldn’t enjoy the pow.

      School’s are screwed cause Utards with 12 kids don’t wanna pay teachers jack and think they are entitled to live tax free.

      They’ll all grow up to believe in creationism and drive loads of their spawn into the canyons in immersion spewing mini-vans to maggot up any freshness before you can wake up.

      Take all your sick days for pow teach and enjoy the fluff a duff.

      Hail the DUMPAGE!

  2. BB

    Is this volume of early returns a bit unexpected? The main thrust wasn’t expected until later, correct? Did it just arrive earlier, or is it overachieving and we still have a big thump left to come the rest of the day (are the radar returns in NW Utah/SE Idaho going to drop down into the area)?

      1. Tim Bowers

        NAM with the win! Nice HEAAAAAVY band entering the western lake. Will be there late afternoon, I hope, before it dries out.

  3. Walt

    Jeremy/north basin update is ~7-8″. Just tried to go for a spin on the fatbike… nothing doing! It’s a sliding day, not a rolling one!

  4. Tim Bowers

    checking the 12Z ECMWF……..216 & 240hr (next Wed/Thu) 500mb heights and MSLP give me wood. Certainly wasn’t there the last two model runs so whatevs….but still.

  5. Kenny

    Looks like North of 84 (Basin/PowderMtn) not really seeing this early wave. Is there optimism for these areas for tonight/tomorrow?

  6. Patrick

    Certainly looked like a “up to 20″ or more storm in favored locations” in the models yesterday, I couldn’t figure out why no one was forecasting this. Almost every snow stake in the Wasatch is reporting over 12″ already and the storm is only half over. Better to under-forecast than over I guess ;).

    1. Tim Bowers

      I first mentioned late Friday morning (MT) that the NAM that day was coming in wetter than expected but I was skeptical and only called for up to 4″ of snow for Monday. For the remainder of Friday and into Saturday, the model remained consistent with up to 10″ or so, then dropped off Sunday and even overnight into this morning with the idea of BIG POW. That is quite odd; forecasts 2-3 days away blew away forecasts 6-24 hours away. However, by Sunday, the GFS Parallel had come around on good snowfall so it’s not a total surprise. It was out there as early as Friday but lack of agreement (NAM much wetter than GFS) and consistency (old NAM much better than newer NAM) kept me at least on the conservative side.

      But, hey, better to be THIS wrong that the OTHER wrong.

  7. Crocodile

    Skied PC today and it was knee deep by 1:00PM, and didn’t let up all afternoon. Stoked I’m off until 2:00PM tomorrow.

  8. TR

    I was hoping PC would get 2-3 inches 4-5 days ago. May be close to 18 inches by time is all said and done.

  9. Thad

    So happy for you guys. I’m heading out there next week and praying for something(s) similar! Enjoy tomorrow.

  10. Charlie

    Alta was heavy pretty much all day. Have to believe that it was 16 + inches when we left this afternoon. So nice of the Snow Gods to give such a great gift to a couple of visitors from the Ice Coast.

  11. Tim Bowers

    Checking the Canyons stake, here’s what I was able to determine:
    920-930am: snow starts
    1000: 1″ (30-40mins)
    1011: 2″ (11mins)
    1021: 3″ (10mins)
    1031: 4″ (10mins)
    1121: 5″ (50mins)
    1131: 6″ (10mins)
    1151: 7″ (20mins)
    1206: 8″ (15 mins)
    1221: 9″ (15 mins)
    1256: 10″ (35 mins)
    207pm: 11″ (71 mins)
    311pm: 12″ (64 mins)
    441pm: 13″ (90 mins)
    556pm: 14″ (75 mins)

    1. brig

      11:21-12:21 Dumpage. Don’t imagine the vis was too good.

      I think I was in 6″ an hour before, but that may have been an over-estimate by 2-3x. Pretty much a whiteout outside the trees with 1-2″ stellar plates is what I recall.

      But it could have been a dream.

  12. matt

    Jupiter was absurdly deep today. thigh to waist deep! Not to mention free refills since it was a ghost town. Tomorrow will be just as good. Hope I can last longer than 5 hours. Jello legs today by 3:15

    1. Tim Bowers

      Canyons 15″ with 5″ overnight. That 5″ overnight is suspect. By sunset, the stake was at 13-14″. And, looking at the stake cam overnight, not much really accumulated.

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