We start to clear out and warm up today with temperatures in the 40's. Winds increasing through the day with gusts to 50+ mph on the mountain tops by afternoon. For the weekend high pressure continues to build in. We will see sunny skies and high temperatures into the 40's on the upper mountains, and 50's down low and at lake level. Wind gusts to 40+ mph may continue on Friday on the mountain top, but should start to relax over the weekend. Next week we begin a pattern change towards wetter and eventually cold weather. We could see the first storm move in Tuesday. The latest model runs show light precipitation through Tuesday night. We may just see light high elevation snow. The next stronger storm may move in next Thursday into Friday. It may start wet with high snow levels and then colder air may work in Thursday night into Friday with snow for all elevations. We could see a break the weekend of the 20th, and then storms continuing the week of the 22nd.
Spring Break in Lake Louise
Short Term Forecast
The final wave of the series from the storm moved through early yesterday morning. The ski resorts West of the lake along the crest picked up a final 1-2 inches of snow. Here are the final totals reported for the storm.
For the keep me honest, post-storm, actual vs final forecast report, we see that the ski resorts measuring near to just above 8k came in on forecast for this storm (albeit the low end), and the ski resorts measuring just below 8k came in under. The snow levels sat near 8k for the heaviest part of the 3 waves that moved through, so most mountains have the reported amounts above that on the upper mountains, and light amounts or no snow below that.
We are now about 30% of the way through the ski season with about 14% of the seasonal average snowfall so far on the upper mountains.
Today we have a storm moving through to our North. We aren't going to get any precipitation just clouds, but watch the winds today. They will be increasing all day and will be pretty strong by late afternoon, so lifts that are open this morning may be on wind hold by afternoon. So get out early today. High temps in the 40's and wind chills making it feel a bit colder than that.
For the weekend we have sunny skies and mild temperatures through Monday, with highs in the 50's. So a spring like weekend for the MLK 3 day weekend.
The pattern begins to change Monday night as the trough in the Northeast Pacific begins to nose into the West Coast. The first wave of precipitation may arrive for Tuesday into Tuesday night. The European model, which has been consistently wetter than the other models for this storm, has trended much drier today. Like the other model runs it is keeping the heaviest precip to our North with the first system.
The GFS is still the driest model with only very light precip for Tuesday.
The Euro is still wetter but trending drier.
The snow levels look to be around 8,000 feet again with this first system. So maybe some light snow for the mountain tops Tuesday into Tuesday night. High end forecast of an inch taking the latest model run average.
We may have a break Wednesday with highs in the 40's. Then the next storm moves in Thursday into Friday. The forecast models have been consistently wetter with this storm. The latest model runs show the possibility of a wave moving through Thursday and a second on Friday. Here's a look at the total precipitation forecasts by Saturday morning.
The 6z GFS run had snow levels starting around 7k and then falling to lake level or lower through Friday. We are still a week out, but if we see 2-3 inches of liquid with snow levels dropping below lake level, we could have the first decent all elevation snowstorm this season. So we will continue to be watching this storm closely the next 7 days.
Looking at the long-range it looks like we could have a break between storms the weekend of the 20th, even though the pattern holds with a trough over the West Coast.
That trough may continue to sit near the West Coast into the last week of January keeping the storm door open. The next storm may move in around the 22nd-23rd.
There could be more storms behind that through the last week of January. The temperatures may be much colder for highs as well starting next weekend behind the storm.
The MJO may be working it's magic for the 2nd half of January.
You can see where the ski resorts are currently sitting for snowfall and base versus average on our cool charts on the ski resort pages!
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