Wednesday, February 11, 2015 at 6:46 am


High pressure will keep the area warm and dry through the rest of the week into this weekend with Spring-like conditions. Cold air with the potential for snow returns early next week… Finally.


High pressure is now in control and will keep us very warm and very dry through the rest of the week into this weekend.  Here is that high pressure reaching its peak on Friday over the Western United States:


However, things will start to change this weekend, by late Monday / early Tuesday of next week the ridge amplifies and shifts westward, pushing up into Alaska.  This is going to allow cold air and perhaps snowfall to enter in the region via the “backdoor”.  You can see this via the same map on Tuesday morning of next week (2/17):


Model agreement that this pattern will set up is high right now, so I feel confident that we will be cooling down early next week.  All models bring in some degree of storm energy as well, but vary greatly on how strong.  It makes a huge difference how far west the moisture will track with regard to how much snow we’ll get out of it.  Right now it could be anywhere from just a light dusting to a fairly significant event.  We’ll just have to watch and see over the coming days how things trend.  But cold air! A chance for snow! This is a good change for us no matter how you slice it!  Let’s hope Mother Nature lets these storms in the backdoor!



Long range:

Looking toward later next week, things become even less clear.  Some ensembles try to re-build the ridge off the coast and shut down storms again.  Others re-build the ridge, but keep it far enough west that storms still drop down the backside.  Another solution, notable in the 06z GFS as well as the 00z ECMWF control run, continue the idea of undercutting the ridge during the last weeks of February and bring a series of storms into the region.  To sum it all up, there are still a range of different solutions.  Some not great, some pretty good, and some really good.  Personally, I’m liking what I’m seeing.  At the very least we are seeing a pattern shift — FINALLY!  It certainly has the potential to turn into a full scale pattern change.  In the meantime, it looks like we have cold air and perhaps snow returning next week.


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13 thoughts on “Backdoor

  1. Kent Stevens

    I want to thank you for your website. I live in Oceanside Ca. and have fallen in love with Utah skiing.In order to plan my trips I rely on your site exclusively.Thanks again and keep up the good work. Kent

  2. Annie

    Yes!! Thank you so much for this summary!! It what I had been looking for all over the internet! I have sent so many prayers to the heavens and begging for Mother Nature to finally send us some positive relief in snow/precipitation to the Intermountain West!!

  3. Chuck

    Any idea of when you might have a handle on snowfall amounts?

    Targhee on Monday and Salt Lake the rest of the week!!

  4. brig

    Wow storms coming in from the N-N/E would be weird. Where are I guess that snow would be real dry?

    Let hope the backdoor blue northern, chinook, whatever you would call that situation is like Ice Cube claiming the “potential to blow up a WInchell’s.” I take a dozen powdered donuts please.

    Does that raccoon have back fat? Think he has been getting into the donuts too.

    If High pressure dominates Alaska and the Bering Sea for days the Pac storms that form in West Pac should meander towards So Cal? Hope the Jet takes a dip and shoves them our way for some March Madness precipitation.

    Thanks for all the awesome forecast updates Evan.

  5. Tbl

    Oh please Jebus let this happen. You gave us a great Xmas present but I think we are all paid up now for the 2011 season.

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