Cold air is still around for Friday with sunny skies. Then over the weekend milder air moves in with highs in the 40's. A cold trough digs into the area Monday bringing colder air and highs only in the 20's and 30's for the first half of next week. This is a dry front so we are not expecting much more than some light snowfall accumulations. We could see a wetter storm move in next Thursday into Friday with a return of accumulation snows for the mountains. The forecast models are at odds on whether that pattern continues beyond a week or returns to a drier pattern.
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Short Term Forecast
I was having some issues with the forecast models this morning which caused a delay in posting. It may work out well because I may not be able to post tomorrow due to some traveling.
The forecast models are not very consistent in the short or long term, which is why I named the post model bowl. We will see the forecast models duke it out and we will see who will win the forecast.
Not much change to the forecast for the weekend as we see milder weather move in.
Not much change to the forecast for Monday either as we are still expecting a cold trough to dig down from the North. The GFS forecast model continues to come in drier with each run, but the European model digs the trough a bit further and brings the chance for a couple inches of light snow with the snow showers Monday into Tuesday.
Here is a look at the GFS total precip forecast.
So we may see a lot more cold than we do snow. Highs in for the first half of the week should stay in the 20's on the mountains.
Another trough may dig down the coast Thursday into Friday. This time it may tap moisture from across the Pacific to a low near Hawaii. The forecast models are again at odds as the GFS is keeping the heaviest precip just to our North, and the European model is bringing a decent amount of precip in. We just have to watch the snow levels as milder air could get pulled in.
Here is a look at the GFS total precip forecast through next Friday.
So we will keep a close eye on this to see how much precip and snowfall could work South into our area a week from now.
We may see a change in the overall pattern the week of the 12th. Look at the pattern now with the strong ridge in Canada and a ridge in the East Pacific which is the pattern that has been helping to force the cold troughs South into the West before they head East.
Here is a look at the pattern by Monday. We have been discussing this change to a weaker ridge over Canada and the ridge starting to build in the Southeast, with the trough digging down the West Coast. That will bring more cold next week and the chance for stronger storm by the end of the week.
We were thinking that pattern could settle in but now the latest trend is for the ridge in Canada to continue to weaken and for a trough to form where the ridge was by the week of the 12th.
That is the opposite pattern of this week. It goes from the ridge over the top and the troughs coming underneath, to the troughs to the North over the ridge to the South. This forecast is similar on all the ensemble mean forecasts. The pattern may become very active with storms into Canada and the Pacific NW.
If the GFS is correct in the long-range we could go into another extended dry stretch after the storm next Friday. You may be panicking running the GFS at home. But the European model once again does not completely agree. It has a flatter ridge near the West coast in the long-range and the storm track digging further South into Northern CA.
Here is a look at the total snowfall forecast over the next 2 weeks on the GFS. 1-2 inches....wee aww...
So we have 3 case studies ahead. The European model has snow for Monday while the GFS is dry, the European model is much wetter than the GFS next Friday, and the European model keeps an active pattern going the week of the 12th while the GFS keeps the storms to our North. Next week and the week after let's remember the differences and see who performs better.
Let's hope GFS is not correct or else the ski resorts had better keep cranking those snow guns as that will be our best chance of accumulating snows through mid-December.
The Central Sierra Snow Lab reported 51 inches of snow for November, and now 65 inches for the season. That is 16% of the total season average. That is the most snow we have seen this early in the season since 2010. So we have a good start but we need to keep the storms coming.
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