Lift-served skiing/riding in Montana came to a glorious close this past weekend at Big Sky Resort where they pulled in a storm total of 25” of pow across Lone and Andesite mountains. Big Sky had an outstanding April receiving 61” since April 1st. This will be my last post of the 21/22 season but look out for my seasonal recap in the coming week with highlights of the 21/22 winter. Powder Out!
Short Term Forecast
Below: It was DEEP at Big Sky over this past closing weekend. Image / Big Sky Resort
EAST of the Continental Divide:
Above average temps and a mix of clouds and sun will be the weather story for the early week. Tuesday evening a weakening cold front will bring a few flurries and scant accumulations of around 1” across SW Montana’s mountains. Freeze levels will be quite high at around 9000’.
Attention turns to the Thursday night/Friday time span as a strong cold front and associated low-pressure system moves into the Northern Rockies. SW Montana looks to be in prime location as models are hinting of a closed low developing over the region. The Gallatin’s and Madison’s could see storm totals of 6 – 12” by days end on Friday. The Bridger’s could pick up 3 – 6”. Snow levels will be right around 6000’.
WEST of the Continental Divide:
A few disturbances will move through Western Montana this week. Tuesday, a cold front will bring light snowfall (1 – 2”) across West Central and NW Montana’s mountains. Snow levels will begin around 6000’ and lower to around 5000’ by late afternoon Tuesday.
Thursday into Friday, a more robust system will bring better chances of higher amounts (3 – 6”) across SW locations like Lost Trail Pass and the Pintler Range. Lesser amounts across the Whitefish Range and around Essex in southern Glacier NP. Snow levels with this storm look to be in the 4500’ to 5000’ range.
WEST and EAST of the Continental Divide
Unsettled and generally below average temps look to the weather pattern to close out April this coming weekend. The active and cool pattern extends into the following week as Pacific weather systems will play into the forecast every other day or so. This is good news for the Northern Rockies snowpack.
Speaking of snowpack, here’s the latest numbers from the NRCS on River Basin percentages of average across the Treasure State. Snowpack has been growing exponentially for the entire month of April across all of Montana.
Powder Out –
Montana Ski Areas & Resorts / Geographical References
WEST of the Divide with CLOSING DATES:
Whitefish Mountain Resort – CLOSED
Blacktail Mountain – CLOSED
Turner Mountain – CLOSED
Lookout Pass (MT/ID) - CLOSED
Montana Snowbowl – CLOSED
Discovery Basin – CLOSED
Lost Trail Powder Mountain – CLOSED
EAST of the Divide:
Big Sky Resort – CLOSED
Bridger Bowl – CLOSED
Red Lodge Mountain – CLOSED
Great Divide – CLOSED
Showdown – CLOSED
Teton Pass Ski Area – CLOSED
Maverick Mountain – CLOSED
Backcountry Avalanche Reports:
West Central Montana Avalanche Center
Flathead Avalanche Center
Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center:
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