The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Thursday, February 9, 2017 at 7:09 am


Very warm air is currently over the region with temperatures today likely to reach record levels for many locations for this date.  Rain showers will turn to snow in the high elevations as a cold front pushes through later on Friday.  Saturday could be a decent powder day.  Clearing for late in the weekend into early next week.


The good news is that we have another storm pushing into the region. The bad news is that temperatures are very warm.  The ugly news is that means rain will fall perhaps all the way up to 9,000 feet (maybe higher) before snow levels fall during the day on Friday.  This is all thanks to another atmospheric river event pounding California with moisture being pulled from Hawaii:

Today we will see periodic rain showers and temperatures will be extremely warm.  Perhaps mid-60s in the valleys (which would be record highs) and up into the 40s in the mountains.  Snow levels could rise to 9,000 feet or above today into tonight.  Currently the temperature at 9,600′ at Alta-Collins is a balmy 35F, and it’s been as high as 37F already this morning.

The main storm pushes in on Friday with snow levels dropping a touch down to maybe 8000-8500 feet.  If you’re planning to ski Friday, expect rain at the base in the morning.  Might be a good day to get creative with a trash bag as your outer shell as it will be a wet day to be on the slopes.  Snow levels will fall through the day and really crash late Friday evening.  However, by that time, the best precip could be over.  Hoping to get at least a few inches of fluff on top.

Accumulations by Saturday…  6-12″ of extremely dense snow for elevations above 9,000 feet.  Lesser amounts for the lower elevations.  As I’ve stated previously, it’s not a good storm by typical ski standards, but Friday afternoon and Saturday morning could still be fun!

We will clear out fully on Sunday with warming conditions again and dry weather for the first half of next week.

Long Range:

Active weather will take aim at California later next week.  Initially, systems may have trouble maintaining strength as they cross the Great Basin.  We could see a weak-ish system around Friday the 17th, and perhaps a stronger storm for around Monday the 20th.  These storms do appear to be at least a little bit colder than current storms.


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17 thoughts on “The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

  1. Tim Lincecum

    I’m arriving Sat to PCMR. Is the rain going to turn everything to ice with some soft stuff on top? Kind of like spring conditions? Just trying to plan what do bring and where to go….

    1. Peter Donner

      If you haven’t seen it, check out the LCC guidance at the U

      This updates every day, maybe every 6 hours

      Focus on “wetbulbzero”: this is the freezing elevation, rain snow line is 1000 feet below, takes 1000 feet for snow to melt. In the 2/9 6z NAM12 it is 9000 feet Fri 11am, falling to zero 24 hours later, Sat 11am when you arrive.

      Mt. Baldy temp (I think this is 11k feet, maybe 10k) is 36 degrees this afternoon falling to below 10 degrees during the day Sat.

      You can also use the NWS icons, this one is for PC mid mountain 8000 feet

      If the forecast verifies there will be a bit of high density cream on frozen/freezing slush Saturday, w wintry conditions. Sunday begins a warming trend that will be spring like.

  2. todd speakman

    I was in Utah in 2015 with 50 degree temps in January. last year with 50 degree temps in early February. I just returned from Verbier and Zermatt where they had the worst dec/jan in 50 years. Zermatt was 42 and raining my first night. True winter is becoming elusive.

  3. LK

    Any suggestions for where to ski Friday? Was thinking Brighton or Snowbird to get as high as possible. Really wanted to go to Snowbasin but was there yesterday and already icy and crusted over so I’m sure it will be worse. I did get one of the first runs off the tram yesterday so that was a bonus.

        1. Poster Nutbag

          can you guys explain why you like brighton? out of the 4 cottonwoods resorts its easly #4 on my list. not much vert except on millie and no one feature stands out above any other feature you can find at solitude, alta, or bird. and, even though i’m a skier, i can’t understand why boarders like it…too many flat runouts.

          1. thumbdriver2

            What beats the inbounds and sidecountry off-piste of Brighton? Seriously?

            Also it’s not ridiculously overpriced like the other resorts it’s being compared to…

            Really surprised at the Brighton hate here and the failure to read through my sarcasm above.

      1. Chad Niel

        I am diehard Snowbird fan but Brighton is pretty cool too. It’s probably my second favorite resort here.

      2. thumbdriver2

        Yes. Brighton is terrible. Nobody should ever, ever ski there.


        Especially bad for snowboarders.

        Srsly don’t go. It’s the worst. Go to Snowbird.


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