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The Colorado Daily Snow

Snow & Powder Forecasts for Colorado

Cold with light snow on Sunday and Monday

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Summary

Enjoy the warmth and sunshine on Friday and Saturday and more terrain should open each day. The next storm will bring cold temperatures and light snow from Saturday late night through Monday morning. The northern mountains closest to the divide will have the best chance for a few inches of snow. The rest of next week should be dry, then I’m watching a chance for a storm around Nov 20th and again around or just after Thanksgiving.

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Short Term Forecast

Moose!

As promised, we’ll start off with another reader-submitted picture of a moose. This time from Breckenridge, where the moose seems stoked on the pow!

Mountains open for the season

There is no change to the list below, though many resorts are opening new terrain on Friday and Saturday, so check each mountain’s website to see if you can be there when new areas open for the season.

Arapahoe Basin - open every day (see Al’s Blog for updates)

Breckenridge - open every day

Eldora - open every day

Keystone - open every day

Loveland - open every day

Wolf Creek - open every day

Backcountry - lots of snow, lots of wind = avalanche risk. There have been avalanches reported every day of the past week. Please make good decisions and check the forecasts and reports from the avalanche experts at the Colorado Avalanche Information Center and the Crested Butte Avalanche Center.

Past snowfall

The weak and fast-moving storm on Thursday morning brought a quick dusting to most northern mountains, with up to 1 inch at Beaver Creek and Breckenridge, and 2 inches on the snow stake cams at Winter Park and Steamboat.

Friday morning

It’s cold! Temperatures are in the single digits to low teens. It feels like a real winter morning with snow on the ground and chilly air.

Friday & Saturday

Enjoy the new terrain under sunny skies and high temperatures in the 20s both days.

Storm Saturday night to Monday Night

This will NOT be a big snow producer for most mountains. The best chance for the most snow will be near and east of the divide.

The snow will come in two waves, one on Saturday night and another on Sunday night.

Total snow accumulation from the CAIC WRF model shows most northern mountains in the 2-5 inch range with up to 8 inches in the foothills east of the divide around Eldora and Echo.

A quick look at another model confirms the general trend toward seeing the most snow east of the divide.

And the multi-model comparison from the University of Utah, for Loveland (on the divide), continues to show the best chance for 3-5 inches along with chances for lower and higher totals as well, so don’t just look at the average even though it’s useful!

You should be able to find some fresh snow to enjoy on Sunday morning and again Monday morning, though do not expect big totals. Also, moisture will be limited on Sunday night and Monday, so I’m a bit worried that snow totals could be a bit lower than these models show.

Cold temperatures will be another story with this storm. Expect highs in the upper single digits to low teens both Sunday and Monday with temperatures below zero on Monday morning.

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Extended Forecast

Following the snow and cold temperatures on Monday (Nov 12), the rest of next week should be dry with average to above average temperatures.

The next chance for a storm might be around Tuesday, November 20th. Most models show something during this time, but that’s 11 days away so we can’t focus on the details.

Beyond that, there is now a trend toward more storminess later in the month.

Compare the temperature forecast from November 14-23, a drier period…

…with the temperature forecast for November 23 - December 3, which looks like a stormier period.

The model above is the CFSv2, a longer-range model. It is known for being terribly inaccurate. But, at least in this case, it shows a storm signal during the end of November which generally matches the European model, and it also matches our recent history of storm cycles repeating every 3-4 weeks.

Right now, our snowpack is in great shape (150-200% of average) and more terrain is opening. With the low sun angle of November, most of the snow on the ground will stick around. Then if we can get into another storm cycle in late November and early December, we’ll really be in great shape.

Thanks for reading!

My next update will be on Saturday, November 10.

JOEL GRATZ

PS - If you’re coming to my talk in Breckenridge on Friday, please see below as the venue has changed!

Announcements

My upcoming presentations about the winter forecast and tips for chasing pow!

* What an AMAZING time we had on Thursday night at the Boone Mountain Sports / Evergreen Brewery in Evergreen! Thanks to everyone who came out!

* Update Location! Friday, November 9 in Breckenridge at the Riverwalk Center. Party, my talk, and a movie. Time from 500-830pm. Please get your free ticket here.

* November 28 in Vail at Walking Mountains Science Center. Free to attend. The talk starts at 630pm. Please RSVP here.

* December 5 in Denver.

 

OpenSummit

We have an iPhone app that provides detailed weather forecasts for your hiking, biking, and climbing adventures. OpenSummit now includes forecasts for 1,000 of the highest and/or notable summits and hiking areas across the United States. Download OpenSummit (iPhone only)

 

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, Arapahoe Basin, Winter Park, Berthoud Pass

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

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

Southern Mountains
Telluride, Silverton – north side of the southern mountains | Purgatory, Wolf Creek – south side of the southern mountains

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