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A change in the weather Monday into Monday night. Light precip possible with snow levels dropping near 7000 ft. or slightly lower. Warmer weather the second half of the week before another system is possible next weekend.
After several days of quiet weather we will see another change tomorrow as low pressure moves in off the Pacific. Not expecting a lot of moisture from this system, just some light precip. The center of the low will be cold so we will see snow levels drop around 7000 ft. Monday evening, possibly a bit lower. That should only equate to a dusting of snow on the moutains when we wake up Tuesday morning. Here is a look at the total precip forecast from Canadian model which is one of the more aggressive runs.
The system clears out by Tuesday but leaves behind some colder air. We will warm up the second half of the week back into the 60's at lake level.
The trend on the models the past 24 hours is for another system to dig down the West Coast next weekend. This one could bring heavier precip if it digs far enough South. All of the forecast models show a chance for precip next weekend but the Canadian is the most agressive with precip amounts right now. Snow levels could be low enoug for mountain snow with this system if it pans out.
Looking at the long-range pattern there are no signs right now of a long-term ridge that would keep us dry for a prolonged period. We could see more troughs push into the West Coast going into November. The trend on the CFSv2 climate model the last few days is for a wet November.
When we looked at the Winter forecast ideas last month we talked about the possibility of an early start to the storms this Fall with the weak El Nino conditions developing. The question is how with the rest of the Winter pan out? My thoughts were and continue to be that we will be right on the edge between above average precip to our South and below average to our North. The rigde is expected to sit along the West Coast of Canada down to the Pacific NW much of the Winter with the Southern jet coming underneath into Southern CA. Below is the latest Winter forecast map from accuweather that lines up with what we have been thinking.
You can see why we could have a 50/50 chance of an average or below average season for precip. The second question will be snowfall vs. precip. Even with an average precip season we will need low snow levels for a good snow year. Let's hope we can get enough cold and the storm track is far enough North this Winter. We'll take the precip either way.
The trend over the past couple of days has been for the GFS to be further North with the systems this week. That's now in line with the other models. We will see some wind, clouds, cooler temps, and possibly some light precip Tuesday into Wednesday as the cold front pushes through the area. Another system may brush us again next weekend and the beginning of the following week.
For now nothing significant in the forecast, just a more active pattern to our North.
I have been watching the forecast model runs all week. They continued to show the ridge off the West Coast being replaced by a trough next week with a couple of systems possibly bringing us precip. The trend was that the first system Tuesday stayed just to our North and then possibly the following system digging further South next weekend.
Today the runs of the GFS model started digging the trough further South Tuesday into Wednesday with up to an inch of liquid along the crest. Some of the other models are not in agreement yet. The European model is slightly furthern North with only light precip, and the Canadian model is keeping all of the precip to our North.
Here is the total precip forecast from the latest GFS run.
And the Canadian
The snow levels on the GFS and European model runs are around 8,000 ft. for most of the event dropping to 7000 ft. near the end as the cold front passes. We will keep watching the next few days to see how far South the system digs and how much precip we could see.
After that another system may push in next weekend as another trough pushes into the West Coast. Right now that one looks like it will keep most of the precip to our North with only light amounts possible.
Another system may push in behind that as the ridge stays well off the coast and troughs drop into the West Coast. The MJO strengthening in phase 1 is a positive sign for this more active pattern coming up as well. Overall the wet season looks like it will be getting started for the Pacific NW the next couple of weeks. We will be right on the Southern edge of the active pattern so we will watch each system to see how far South they could come.
I posted last week that we could see a pattern change around mid-month. Some of you have been asking for an update. October is usually a quiet month, especially to start, but it can bring decent snows later in the month. Last year the mountains saw a decent storm that dropped 1-2 feet in late October.
The forecast models in the unreliable long-range continue to show the ridge off the coast being replaced by a trough by the end of week 2. I am continuing to watch the runs each day and other variables going on. Still watching for a possible pattern change to cooler and possibly stormy around mid-month possilby due to remnants of a typhoon moving across the North Pacific next week. I will update as we get closer.
I am also watching the patterns develop that could affect our Winter weather. Some of you have asked for a Winter forecast. I have already posted 2 long discussions about the upcoming Winter in September if you look back through the posts. I plan to have a Winter forecast out before the end of the month.
For now the weather will get slightly cooler the second half of this week but we should stay dry for the next 10 days. Then maybe a change.
The system from the weekend cleared out to our East today. It ended up dropping several inches of snow above 8000 ft. as expeceted. The ski resorts took the opportunity to snap some photos on the upper mountains to get some early marketing going. These shots are from Saturday.
Does that get you in the mood for skiiing? Nothing more dramatic than going from wildfires, dry conditions, and temps in the 80's to snowcapped mountains.
High pressure is building back in off the coast. That will bring drier and warmer weather as the week goes on. That should last through next week.
The GFS and European forecast model runs have been hinting at a pattern change the second week of October. The long-range on the models this time of year with the change of the seasons can be less reliable. It is something to watch over the next week. Here is the CFS forecast for the 7th - 12th showing the ridge along the West Coast, and then the 12th to the 17th the ridge shifting up towards Alaska with a West Coast trough.
More early season snow? Maybe.... It's not uncommon for early snow during weak El Nino conditions, we'll see.