Colorado Daily Snow

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By Joel Gratz, Founding Meteorologist Posted 18 days ago April 2, 2024

Snow ends, sunny week ahead, then a weekend storm

Summary

Monday offered fresh turns at a few spots, and Monday evening's snow showers will translate into more soft-ish turns on Tuesday morning. For the rest of the week, expect sunny and dry weather with warming temperatures. Then a strong storm will bring snow and wind on Saturday and Sunday with possible powder on both days. After that, another storm should arrive around Wednesday, April 10.

Short Term Forecast

Monday

Monday offered some fresh snow at spots that received decent accumulations from Sunday night's showers.

One spot that saw more snow was Wolf Creek, where 6 inches accumulated on Sunday night, and led to nice-looking turns on Monday morning.

Monday's weather was showery, and the snow showers generally intensified on Monday night. Total snowfall from these showers was somewhat random and generally favored the northern mountains farther to the east (Breckenridge, A-Basin, Loveland) and the northern part of the southern mountains (Silverton, Telluride).

Tuesday

Tuesday morning's snow totals reached the 2-4 inch range for a few spots, and with most of this falling on Monday night, there will be some areas of soft snow to enjoy on Tuesday morning.

The deepest overnight total fell at Breckenridge where we see about 4 inches on the snow stake.

While Tuesday's snow totals do not look impressively high, just a few inches combined with clearing skies and light crowds can create a super fun morning.

Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday

The rest of this week will be dry, mostly sunny, and warm.

Tuesday will see morning clouds transitioning to sunshine with a high temperature in the 30s.

Wednesday and Thursday will be sunny and warmer with a high temperature in the 40s.

Friday will also be warm with a high temperature in the 40s, and we will experience gusty winds of 30-50 mph during the midday and afternoon.

Snow conditions for the rest of the week will be typical of spring, with crunchy snow in the morning, softening to fun/corn conditions during the late morning and midday, and likely some slushy areas during the afternoon.

Extended Forecast

During the upcoming weekend, a strong storm will bring snow, powder days, and wind to many areas of Colorado.

Snow should start to fall late Friday night or early on Saturday, and most mountains will see intense snow for at least the first half of the day on Saturday with potential powder by late morning or midday. Then from Saturday afternoon through Sunday afternoon, snow showers will continue for the northern and central mountains with some potential for powder on Sunday.

The storm will be strong, which is a good thing, but moisture will be limited and wind speeds could/should be fast, and the lack of moisture and strong winds make me a little concerned that snow conditions may not be perfect powder even though snow totals could be 6-12+ inches from Saturday morning through Sunday evening.

For now, I am keeping my eye on Saturday morning and midday as the time for intense snow with sneaky fun powder, and then maybe (maybe) some mountains will continue to see enough snow to maintain soft/powder conditions into Sunday.

Following the weekend storm, we should have dry weather on Monday, April 8, and Tuesday, April 9.

Then around Wednesday, April 10, a storm will track to our south. This system could stay too far south and bring little snow to Colorado, or the storm could track just close enough so that our southern and eastern mountains see significant snow around Wednesday. It's too close to call and we'll have to wait and see.

Description: The graphic above shows 51 versions of the European EPS ensemble model (top) on the y-axis (vertical) and 15 days from left to right on the x-axis (horizontal). Each colored rectangle shows a chance for precipitation, with grey equaling little precipitation, green equaling light precipitation, and blues and oranges showing significant precipitation. The more the colors are aligned vertically, the higher the confidence in the forecast.

After about April 10, most longer-range forecast models show drier weather with just weaker storms roaming around the western part of North America. This forecast doesn't mean that winter is over as there will likely be more snow for the mountains during the last half of April, but it does appear that the weather will be more spring-like than winter-like with lower chances for powder days and higher chances for warm and dry days.

My next update will be Wednesday morning.

Thanks for reading!

Joel Gratz

Announcements

NEW: Snow Ratio Forecast

You can now get a good idea of the upcoming snow quality for the next storm via our new "Snow Ratio" forecast for any location in OpenSnow.

When we talk about snow quality, such as “light and fluffy” or “heavy and wet”, we are talking about the snow-to-liquid ratio. The higher the snow-to-liquid ratio, the lighter the snow quality, and vice-versa.

  1. Go to any location screen and tap the "Snow Summary" tab.
  2. Scroll down to the 5-day hourly or 10-day forecast section.
  3. View the 5-day hourly or daily "Snow Ratio" forecast for the next 10 days.

10:1 will be fun but will feel a little heavy.

15:1 will offer some face shots and feel pretty light.

20:1 will be incredibly light, almost like skiing through nothing but air.

This new feature is currently available with the latest version of the OpenSnow iOS app installed (App Store > OpenSnow > Update), on the OpenSnow website (OpenSnow.com), and is currently rolling out to the OpenSnow Android app.

View → Snow Ratio Forecast

Geography Key

Northern Mountains
Steamboat, Granby, Beaver Creek, Vail, Ski Cooper, Copper, Breckenridge, Keystone, Loveland, Arapahoe Basin, 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, Snowmass, 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

About Our Forecaster

Joel Gratz

Founding Meteorologist

Joel Gratz is the Founding Meteorologist of OpenSnow and has lived in Boulder, Colorado since 2003. Before moving to Colorado, he spent his childhood as a (not very fast) ski racer in eastern Pennsylvania.

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