I confirmed that the upper mountain of Sundance really did get that much snow. One of the best bluebird mornings of my life. Those of us that were there will remember it for a long time.
12z suite looks a little bit better for a bit of light precip tonight in far northern Utah. I’m not quite sure how much we can squeeze out, but after the week we’ve had, I’m not going to bet against it. Perhaps a few inches of snow in the Wasatch tonight, mainly north of SLC.
A system clipped northern Utah last night and brought a healthy dose of snow to most Northern Mountains. Utah will see a warm up this weekend. A small system moves in early Sunday morning for a quick round of snow. A large, and moist system could bring big snow to Utah early next week.
Our bonus storm we talked about yesterday morning sure did deliver last night — better than expected if you ask me. Highest total is Sundance with 17″… very interesting. LCC is in the 10-12″ range. PC 8-10″. BCC 7-9″. Snowbasin 15″, although 6″ of that was from yesterday morning. Powder Mountain 8″. A good, non-discriminatory storm for Northern Utah.
The one caveat from this storm was that it appears the winds picked up after the snow stopped, so much of the snow in exposed areas could be wind blown. You can see this wind shape the snow this morning at Snowbird:
Deer Valley showing really good accumulations on their Empire Cam deck:
In short, there’s plenty of snow out there and the skiing/riding today should be great.
We will clear up today and warm up for Friday and Saturday. Clouds could still linger as moisture pushes into the PNW, but we should be mostly dry.
The next system is going to push in late Saturday night into Sunday morning. This is a quick-moving cold front. Nothing too impressive, but it could drop some quick modest accumulations to add a bit of softness to your turns on Sunday.
Interest is still on the Monday-Wednesday time frame. Right now it appears that moisture will start to push into Northern Utah on Monday in association with a strong jet aimed right at us. The strongest impulse will move into the region on Tuesday with a prolonged period of heavy precipitation for mainly Northern Utah. This could last into Wednesday.
Models have been consistent in how they handle this system and virtually all ensembles indicate quite a lot of snow for the high elevations. Here is a look at the 00z NAEFS ensemble snowfall for the Upper Cottonwoods:
You can see we have a tiny little storm on Sunday (20-DEC), then things start to pick up on Monday (21-Dec), then mother nature unloads on Tuesday and Wed (22-Dec and 23-Dec). According to this, even the lowest ensemble output is 40″ of snow for the Upper Cottonwoods by Christmas Eve. Even if this is 30% overdone, we can still assume that a hefty dose of snowfall is on the way.
Yesterday there were a few questions about snow levels. They will certainly be higher, probably off the valley floors of the Wasatch Front, which means rain on top of all our snow… yuck! However, right now I don’t see them much higher than 6,500 feet. Should be all snow, just not quite the light and fluffy variety we saw this week. While it could cause some avalanche issues, this denser snow will be good for filling in the backcountry and getting more terrain open in the long-run.
It does look like there will be a break around Christmas Eve. Right now the models diverge for Christmas. The GFS brings in another similar system, whereas the EC amplifies and drops the system down the west coast. Both solutions would bring us continued active weather, but the GFS would be much more significant.
Same message as yesterday. Lots of potential. Nothing guaranteed. We are till 5 days away from the strongest portion of this upcoming storm, so details are still vague. Stay tuned!
P.S. Last I heard, LCC is closed for avalanche control with an estimated opening of 9am.