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The Colorado Daily Snow

Snow & Powder Forecasts for Colorado

Tuesday morning powder estimate

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Update

I am updating at about 1 am on Tuesday morning as I just returned home from a talk at Beaver Creek and want to have an update on the storm when you wake up as I may not be able to post a full forecast until later on Tuesday or early Wednesday.

On Monday and Monday night, we did see the most intense snowfall in the southern part of the southern mountains (as expected) and also some higher-than-expected totals in the west-central and west-northern mountains.

From late Sunday night through 1 am on Tuesday morning, here are my estimated snow totals based on resort webcams, resort data, and SNOTEL sites. These might differ from what you see on the official Tuesday morning report because more snow might fall between now and then and also my estimates might be wrong since automated sensors are not always correct (nothing beats a human and a ruler).

Southern Mountains
Purgatory - reported 12” at 430pm on Monday, likely 18”+ by Tuesday morning
Wolf Creek - reported 11” at 230pm on Monday, likely 18”+ by Tuesday morning
Silverton - reported 6” early Monday, likely 18”+ by Tuesday morning
Red Mountain Pass - 10” (SNOTEL)
Telluride - 3-4” (based on snow stake camera)

Central Mountains

Aspen area…
Schofield Pass - 14” (SNOTEL between Crested Butte and Aspen)
Snowmass - 6-12” (automated measurement, western side of the Aspen area heavily favored)
Sunlight - 6” (snow stake camera, western side of the Aspen area favored)
Aspen Highlands - 5-6” (automated measurement)
Buttermilk - 4”
Aspen Mountain - 2”

Other areas…
Grand Mesa - 5-10” (based on SNOTEL sites, Powderhorn might report similar amounts, can’t tell from their snow stake camera)
Crested Butte - 4” (snow stake)

Northern Mountains
Steamboat - 8” (about 4” on Monday and 4” on Monday night, based on summit snow stake camera)
Beaver Creek - 4” (snow stake)
Vail - 3” (snow stake)
Winter Park - 3” (snow stake)

Below is a map showing the change in snow-water equivalent (the amount of water you’d measure if you melt the snow). The highest amounts are in the south and also in western areas. Multiply by about 13 to estimate snowfall, though this number will vary quite a bit.

All areas mentioned above should have soft snow on Tuesday morning. Some areas will have deep totals (18 inches!) and even the areas that received just a few inches should still offer soft turns. This storm has met expectations in the southern part of the southern mountains, and especially around Powderhorn, Sunlight, Snowmass, and Steamboat (areas further west) has exceeded expectations. At Snowmass, it appears that one burst of snow in the early evening delivered 2.5-3.0 inches in one hour. Good stuff!

The steady snow should end by early Tuesday morning, and we’ll see drier weather for most of Tuesday and Wednesday.

The next round of snow should begin on Wednesday night and will continue through Thursday evening. Most mountains will see snow and I’ll stick with my initial expectation of about 4-8 inches as an average accumulation across most mountains. The best powder should be on Thursday midday/afternoon with soft turns likely on Friday as well.

After that, I think Friday and Saturday will be dry, then the next storm should deliver yet another round of snow sometime in the Sunday/Monday/Tuesday time frame. I don’t know the details of this storm, so stay tuned as we work to nail down the forecast over the next few days.

Thanks for reading!

JOEL GRATZ

Announcements

* I will be giving a talk in Crested Butte on Friday, February 16th from 600-800pm at the Crested Butte Town Hall. This will be an educational talk about weather forecasting in Colorado, with about 1 hour of general information, a short break, and then another hour of more technical discussion for you weather nerds out there. The price is a $15 donation to the Crested Butte Avalanche Center, and that gets you into the event and also gets you free beer! Hope to see you there!

* A big shout out to your local ski shop! Over the past year, I had a tiny yet important part of my ski boot break off, twice, and both times, I walked into the nearest shop and they were able to find me a spare part with no fuss and get me back on snow. In particular, Alpine Quest Sports in Edwards (near Beaver Creek) helped me last season, and Neptune Mountaineering in Boulder helped me this past weekend. Thank you!

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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