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The Colorado Daily Snow

Snow & Powder Forecasts for Colorado

Tuesday and maybe Wednesday are looking good

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Summary

Sunday should offer more sun as we’ll be in between storms. Then showers will begin on Monday with intense snow from Monday evening through Tuesday night. The southern mountains will likely see 12-24 inches with 6-12 inches in the northern and central mountains. Snow will likely fall for most of the day on Tuesday and there will also be powder for 1st chair Wednesday morning, especially in the northern mountains. This storm has upside potential so clear your schedule for likely mid-week powder days. Then most of the time from March 1-10 looks dry as the storm track retreats to the north of Colorado.

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Short Term Forecast

Most mountains received flurries and light snow showers on Saturday and Saturday night, adding up to 1-2 inches. The outlier was Steamboat which received a surprise 6.5 inches on Saturday night. I have no idea how they got that much snow as there wasn’t a lot of moisture or energy moving across Colorado. If we knew everything about the weather, I suppose this powder-chasing game would be slightly less fun!

Total snowfall from Thursday through Sunday was highest at Steamboat (19") and Silverton (19") while Telluride came in second with 17".

Sunday’s weather should be dry across the state. There will be lingering clouds, especially in the valleys, and there could be a flurry, but overall we should stay dry with cold morning temperatures, eventually warming 5-10F above Saturday’s high.

Our next storm will bring snow showers starting on Monday, favoring the southern and far western mountains, and then we’ll see a period of heavy snow start on Monday evening and continue through Tuesday morning. For most of the day on Tuesday, this cold front will be draped across Colorado (roughly shown by my blue line below).

The cold front can create additional lift, and lift is necessary for the creation of snow. Because the cold front will linger for a lot of the day, there is serious upside potential with this storm. Then on Tuesday night, the cold front will move east and there will be a period of northwest flow through the early hours of Wednesday morning.

Total precipitation from Monday through Wednesday morning should be 1-2 inches in the southern mountains and 0.5-1.0 inches in the northern and central mountains.

With snow-to-liquid ratios averaging 12:1 to 15:1, this should result in 12-24 inches in the southern mountains, about 8-16 inches in the central mountains, and 6-12 inches in the northern mountains. The best powder days should be Tuesday (storm skiing) and Wednesday morning for leftovers, or potentially deep new snow in the northern mountains following the northwest flow on Tuesday night.

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Extended Forecast

Once the Monday-to-Tuesday night storm moves away, Wednesday through early next week should be dry. The storm track will retreat to the north of Colorado, which will be great for the northern Rockies and western Canada but not so great for us.

We might see some snow and clouds on Sunday into Monday (March 5-6) in the northern mountains, but most models show this storm staying to our north.

There is not much consistency in the models out through mid-March, but looking at the trend across all models, I think that the first 1/3 or 1/2 of the month will be drier, with more action during the final 15-20 days.

Thanks for reading!

JOEL GRATZ

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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, 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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