The massive amounts of recent snow and strong winds, especially in the northern Andes, have kept terrain and roads closed. Record rain and snowfall have led to flooding, mudslides, and dangerous conditions in the mountains. More heavy precipitation is expected today (Wednesday) before things start to wind down on Thursday. The next system arrives Sunday night.
Short Term Forecast
We have more impressive snow totals to report, last updated on Wednesday.
Portillo: 94 cms Wednesday, 22 cms Tuesday (271 total)
Las Lenas: 80 cms Tuesday (150 - 350 total)
Valle Nevado: 59 Wednesday, 5 cms Tuesday (142 total)
Nevados de Chillan: 35 cms Wednesday, 35 - 55 cms Tuesday (70 - 90 total)
Cerro Catedral: 80 cms Wednesday, 20 - 40 cms Tuesday (100 - 140 total)
Chapelco: 12 - 115 cms Wednesday, 14 - 131 cms Tuesday (26 - 246 total)
Cerro Bayo: 10 - 65 cms Wednesday, 5 - 55 cms Tuesday (15 - 120 total)
Corralco: 30 cms Wednesday
Chapa Verse: 60 cms
Check out a few shots from the storm thus far.
(Photo from PowderQuest-Tour Guides)
The atmospheric river is still having its way with us, and will continue to do so through the end of the day tomorrow. After this fire hose shifted a bit south the last few days, it will pivot north before weakening. Thus, the heaviest snow today will be at the northern resorts.
There have been a lot of road, lift, and mountain closures over the last few days, including Portillo, which was totally shut down yesterday. Terrain was very limited at Valle Nevado, La Parva, and Las Lenas on Sunday as well. The southern resorts, outside of the bullseye, have had a bit more luck in that regard.
Forecast for Wednesday 8/23 - Friday 8/25
As mentioned, this storm has a lot more snow to deliver today. We will see very intense snowfall in the northern zone throughout the day, with light snow continuing on Thursday as the storm departs the region. For the central mountains, heavy snow will continue on Wednesday and Thursday, becoming lighter Thursday evening, with lingering showers on Friday.
Let's talk about totals. This is not a joke. Another 30 - 50 cms is possible tomorrow through Thursday for resorts like Portillo, Valle Nevado, La Parva, and El Colorado in the north! For the resorts in the central zone, expect 15 - 40 cms during the day, with another 10 - 25 cms Wednesday night. An additional 5 - 15 cms is possible Thursday night as well, with lingering snow showers into Friday.
Southern resorts like La Hoya and Fraile won't see too much from this phase of the storm. Even after all the snow that has fallen so far, the amount of precipitation the models are still showing is wild. Check out the total precipation from this morning through Friday morning below.
Forecast for Saturday 8/26 - Sunday 8/27
We need a break! It's rare that I utter those words, when it comes to snow. But after this much snow and wind, the resorts need time to mitigate avalanche danger and clean up. They will get that time this weekend, with some clearing skies for the northern and central resorts. Phew.
Outlook for Monday 8/28 - Friday 9/1
For Monday, a smaller storm will move over the southern part of the region, bringing light snow to the central and southern resorts. On Tuesday, a stronger storm moves into the region, taking a more northerly track. This should bring significant totals to the central regions and moderate amounts for the north. There is the potential for well over one meter of snow for the higher elevation central resorts with this one. I'll have more details on the next week's storms on Friday. Enjoy all the powder!
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