Tahoe Daily Snow

Snow thru Tuesday Night, Snow Showers Wed & Thu...

Summary

- Steadier snow expected Tuesday afternoon into Tuesday night. Then becoming more showery Wednesday. Scattered snow showers possible Wednesday night then again Thursday afternoon. Snow levels around 5500-6000 ft. Tuesday, then dropping to near 3000 ft. Tuesday night, then back up to around 4500 ft. Wed & Thu. Snowfall totals of 1-10 inches at lake level & 4-18 inches on the mountains. Highs in the 30s at lake level & 20s on the mountains. Ridgetop winds gusting from the southwest up to 60+ mph Tuesday, then falling off Wednesday into Thursday. - High pressure builds in with a drier pattern Friday. Saturday a system moving through to the north could brush us with some light snow showers into Sunday. Highs in the 30s on the mountains & 40's at lake level. - Next week we could see drier weather most of the week with the chance for a system to brush us with light precip around midweek.

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Short Term Forecast

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The Forecast:

We saw some scattered snow showers over the mountains Monday into this morning. Some steadier snow showers developed this morning on the west side of the lake and up along the crest. We saw snow-coated roads & chain controls as the sun came up.

roads

It was also snowing down near lake level west of 89...

squaw

Roads are just wet now with the high sun angle. Showers have been confined to the west side of the lake and near the crest so far, but that will changed later this afternoon & tonight.

I only have the nearest snotel sensors to try & get an idea of snowfall. It looks like 1-2 inches fell on most mountains through early this morning, with a slightly higher reading NW of the lake where up to 6 inches may have fallen near the crest.

Low pressure is moving south down the coast and then inland into Wednesday. 

satellite

That will push a cold front through the area later this afternoon into Tuesday night. The snow will increase and spread across the Tahoe basin this afternoon as the front approaches and moves through.

radar

Ridgetop winds are gusting to 60+ mph this morning & that will continue through the day, then to 50+ mph into Wednesday morning and falling off by afternoon. The heaviest snow is expected Tuesday afternoon through Tuesday night when 3-12 inches could fall on the mountains by Wednesday morning & 1-6 inches at lake level. Highest amounts west of 89 and along the crest with lesser amounts to the east side of the lake. Highs in the 20s on the mountains & 30s at lake level.

The snow becomes more scattered & shower again Wednesday behind the cold front. The best chance for showers west of the lake along the crest and over the mountains. Only expecting an additional inch or two on the mountains & it will be hard for snow to stick at lake level during the day with the higher sun angle.

Wednesday night into Thursday we may see a bit of a break, but then with the heating of the day on Thursday, we could see snow showers pop up again over the mountains by Thursday afternoon. We could see a final coating to an inch or so on the mountains.

Total precipitation amounts on the models through Thursday range between 0.80-1.4 inches near the crest with up to 3/4 of an inch on the east side of the lake. The 100 model average is around 0.95 inches which is slightly wetter than yesterday. Here is a look at the WPC model for total precipitation through Thursday afternoon.

wpc

Snow ratios around 10-13:1 on the mountains Tuesday, increasing to 14-18:1 Tuesday night with a more powdery snow. The average snow ratios around 8k through Thursday of 15:1. Here is a look at the updated total snowfall forecast for Tuesday through Thursday.

snowfall

Friday:

Friday looks like a mostly sunny day with lighter winds. Highs into the 30s on the mountains and 40s at lake level.

The Weekend:

The trend for the weekend has been for the system moving through the Pacific NW Sat-Sun to drop a bit farther south. 

gfs 1

The GFS 06z run was the wettest. Most model runs are just brushing us with light precip Saturday afternoon into Sunday morning. We will have to keep watching the trend to see if we will just see a few light rain/snow showers, or if we could see a few inches of snow on the mountains. Snow levels would drop to lake level if we see steadier snow showers. 

Extended Forecast

Next week we may start dry. The trough is just to the north from this weekend into next week.

trough 1

That pattern has us getting the southern edge of the storm track this upcoming weekend and maybe again with a storm around the middle of next week.

gfs 2

It had looked like we could see a drier pattern this weekend into next week, but the trend has been for a weaker ridge over the West and a farther south storm track into northern CA. We will continue to watch that trend the next few days to see if we could see the active pattern continue but with weaker storms.

Fantasy Range:

The other trend is for the trough to possibly dig farther south into the eastern Pacific the week of the 6th, and be a bit closer to the West Coast.

trough 2

Some model runs show a decent storm for April that week. Winter may not be quite done with us yet. With a change in the seasons, we usually start to see the long-range models struggle with more flip-flopping beyond a week...

Stay tuned...BA

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