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The Colorado Daily Snow

Snow & Powder Forecasts for Colorado
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Details

I don’t have much new information to talk about today, unfortunately.

The current weather pattern is holding, with cold air and snow over the east and warmer and dry conditions across most western mountains.

Source: weather.com

 

The sunny and warm weather in Colorado will continue on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. High temperatures are rising into the upper 30s and low 40s at 10,000 feet, and it looks like you need to get above 12,000 feet to stay below freezing during the day.

The only semi-interesting weather to speak of for the next few days will be the chance for a light snow shower across the northern mountains late on Thursday night into Friday morning. This will occur due to a weak storm that will slide to the northeast of Colorado. At best, this system might provide a dusting of snow to the northern mountains along the divide.

Our next chance for snow will focus on the northern mountains from Saturday night through Tuesday morning. While we could see snow showers during any part of this time period, there is decent agreement between the European model and the American GFS model that the best chance for steadier and heavier snow will occur from Sunday midday through Monday midday. Most northern mountains will likely see total accumulations in the 2-4 inch range, though perhaps we could get 6 inches or a bit more in a few spots. Even though I doubt it’ll reach ‘powder day’ status, Monday morning will likely be the best chance for you to find fresh and soft snow in the northern mountains. Perhaps Tuesday morning will offer powder leftovers.

During the next five days, the snow forecast majorly favors the eastern half of the US and areas to our north, with northern Colorado just getting a bit of snow on Sunday into Monday.

Source: wxcaster.com

 

Looking beyond the chance of light snow on Sunday and Monday, we should see dry weather return for most of Tuesday and Wednesday, then the next storm should bring snow to the entire state next Thursday and Friday (February 18-19). This looks like a relatively fast-moving storm that will be losing strength is it moves across the Rockies, so I think we should temper our expectations. My initial thought is that most mountains in Colorado will see fresh snow, with average amounts in the 3-6 inch range. If things go well, perhaps some areas could see a low-end powder day on Friday, but I think we should consider this storm more of a break in our dry spell rather than a significant snow producer.

In the long range, most models still show the current dry pattern decaying late in February and in early March. But I am a bit worried that we may have to wait a bit longer than this as we’ve repeatedly seen over the last few years how west-coast ridges can persist longer than most models forecast.

For now, enjoy the sunshine (or biking or golf if you’re in lower elevation areas:-).

 

JOEL GRATZ

 

PS - Join me in Denver next Wednesday, February 17th. I’ll be giving a talk at the Arc’teryx Store (Cherry Creek area) and will cover the forecast for the rest of the winter, how to predict powder in each mountain range around Colorado, and the best websites and apps to help you track the weather. I might event throw in a few slides about how to find snow in Japan as I will just have returned from the trip:-) AND … for a small donation you’ll be able to drink beer from Avery Brewing! All of the donations will go to a charity founded in Colorado called SOS Outreach. PLUS … Arc’teryx will be giving away a free jacket. A pretty good way to spend a Wednesday night, eh? RSVP and see more details here: http://opsw.co/20qrD1E

 

Geography Key

Northern Mountains
Steamboat, Granby, Beaver Creek, Vail, Ski Cooper, Copper, Breckenridge, Keystone, Loveland, Abasin, Winter Park, Berthoud Pass, Eldora, Rocky Mountain National Park, Cameron Pass

Along the Divide
Loveland, Abasin, Winter Park, Berthoud Pass

East of the Divide
Eldora, Rocky Mountain National Park, Cameron Pass

Central Mountains
Aspen, Sunlight, Monarch, Crested Butte, Irwin, Powderhorn

Southern Mountains
Telluride, Silverton, Durango, Wolf Creek (Telluride and Silverton are on the northern side of the southern mountains)


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