Friday Freshies

Friday, January 8, 2016 at 6:37 am


A band of wrap around moisture brought snowfall to the region overnight last night with the highest totals focused on Park City and the Cottonwoods.  Light snow showers will continue at times today.  Generally drier this weekend as high pressure weakens storms moving in off the Pacific.


Yesterday morning we talked about how generally most areas would see 1-3″ on Thursday night, however, if banding developed over a localized area, that area could see more.  Luckily, a band of snow yesterday evening developed right over the PC/Cottonwoods area.  It didn’t hold together as long as I hoped, but still dropped 5-6″ at most resorts.  Check out Park City snow stake:


Of course, the pad has been cleared already.  I’ll never understand why PC clears their snow stake in the early morning before most people are even awake to see it.  Luckily we can watch the timelapse to know what happened before they cleared the pad.

Snow showers will continue today, mostly light with minimal additional accumulation.  General clearing into this weekend.  A storm system is entering the west coast on Saturday but will likely weaken considerably as it moves east.  That should be the theme for the next 10+ days.  A large trough off the west coast with high pressure over the central continental U.S.  That means that any storm energy that gets ejected east out of the trough is going to hit the west coast the hardest, then weaken as it moves east.  Right now, the GFS and the EC both have a system for later next week (Friday 1/15) holding its strength enough to perhaps give us modest precipitation, but it is still a week away and I would not be surprised to see models evolve a different solution.

I wish I could tell you this pattern was going to change soon but everything I see in the models show it sticking around for at least two weeks.  This is just the beginning of a strongly influenced El Nino pattern.  The hope is that as Nino’s influence continues to grow on our weather patterns, the storm track will be able to better penetrate east into the interior west.  The CFS seasonal model shows an increasingly wet pattern over the next 40 days:


My gut tells me that toward the end of January we may see some stronger storms again.  February could be very active.  I guess all we can do is hope this is the case.

Enjoy the freshies out there today!


P.S.   I heard that conditions in many locations were very good yesterday.  Great reports out of Snowbasin and the Cottonwoods that the snow was creamy and velvety and skied deeper than what was reported.  I went to Sundance and it was awesome with a foot of dense snow.  Fun times!

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  • Brandon

    Thanks for all you do – live the blog! Alta had 6-10″ of pow stashes everywhere yesterday afternoon with generally 4″ of freshies everywhere. Today should be great at PC.

    • Tom Bennett

      Brandon, same at Snowbird. High Baldy was wonderful…not epic but fresh tracks all morning.

  • Dirty Mike n da boyz

    I’m glad I’m not the only one bugged by park city’s snow stake shananigans. I was up there yesterday afternoon till night skiing closed and by the time we left snow was coming down hard.

  • Chris

    I am coming to Utah from Western NY and skiing mon, tues and wed of next week. Plan on skiing Alta and Snow bird for sure. Not sure which skis to bring, Its either my a Volkl ones (116under foot )or my Blizzard Kobookies (98 under foot). Any recommendation? I know there is not really any fresh snow in the forecast but do you think conditions will still be soft when I get there on Monday?

    • Tom Bennett


  • Andrew Ballard

    Ok, so there something that could possibly produce a little bit of snow late next week. I’ll hang my hat on that 🙂

  • Liz

    We’ll be hitting the Cottonwoods resorts on Jan. 27-31. Hope those storms will be able to work their way in by then…

  • Chad Niel

    After seeing you post multiple resorts snowstake timelapses, I am convinced snowbird has the worst snowstake by a mile. Not only is the angle on it bad, but they seem to have it in an area very reflective of the rest of the resort. Rarely is it matching their reported snow totals.

    • Faceplant

      Totally agree. It’s almost never accurate with the report or how the mountain skis.

  • NoSnowDownLow

    I was just looking at the snowfall from this year to-date and the 14/15 season.

    For the previous season, total snowfall in SolBright & AltaBird were around 250″ (223 – 265).

    For this season and we are only in the first week of January – totals are around 180″ (174 – 188).

    For other areas like PC, Deer Valley, PowMow & Sundance… they have actually already exceeded the previous season’s total snowfall.

    Surely this currently looks to be a reasonable year and we still have a few months to go? I don’t want to curse it or anything, but we should be quite pleased to-date I reckon. Here’s hoping it keeps falling up on the resorts and giving us that all important snowpack for this year’s melt and water supply!

  • TreeRuns

    Today was better than yesterday. I rode tiger tale both days. Yesterday, there was layer of ice underneath.snow kept coming.