The change of seasons is in full swing across the West right now with fall colors right around their peak, while many ski resorts in the Sierra and the Rockies received their first meaningful snowfalls of the season over the past few days. The West will head into a dry & sunny pattern late this week, while the East will see its first major cold front of the fall season.
Short Term Forecast
Snow and Fall Colors Out West:
A slow-moving storm system impacted the West last weekend and early this week, resulting in cool, wet, and snowy conditions for many areas.
Ski resorts in the Sierra Nevada Range from Tahoe to Mammoth saw their first meaningful snow events last weekend, while the Wasatch and the Tetons received several inches of snow on Monday and Tuesday. Colorado resorts also woke up to light accumulations on Tuesday morning.
In Utah, the snow stake cam at Snowbird was showing about 6 inches of accumulation as of Tuesday (October 2).
In the Tetons, a few inches of snow accumulated all the way down to the base area of Grand Targhee with heavier amounts near the summit.
In addition to high-elevation snow, fall colors have also been putting on a show across the Central Rockies recently. Check out this stunning scene of the Maroon Bells near Aspen, Colorado courtesy of OpenSnow Meteorologist Sam Collentine.
Forecast for Wed (Oct 4) to Thu (Oct 5):
The early week storm system will be exiting the West during this period, but there will be enough lingering moisture for additional light snow showers/flurries at times for portions of the Rockies from Northern Colorado to Alberta. Further north, a storm will bring snow to the Coast Range of Alaska.
A cold front associated with the recent Western storm will begin to work its way across the Midwest during this period with rain showers developing across the Great Lakes region.
Forecast for Fri (Oct 6) to Sat (Oct 7):
Conditions will dry out across the West during this period, setting the stage for a beautiful autumn weekend. Meanwhile, the first strong cold front of the season will work its way into Eastern North America with rain developing from the Appalachians to New England. Additional rain showers can also be expected behind the front across the Great Lakes.
Another storm will impact the Coast Range of Alaska during this period with heavy snow expected above 4,000 feet.
Forecast for Sun (Oct 8) to Mon (Oct 9):
A storm will impact the Northeast in the wake of Friday/Saturday's cold front, resulting in more rain across New England, New York, and SE Canada. Also, it's possible that the higher peaks of New England and Upstate New York could see their first snowflakes of the season, though confidence is low this far out.
Further west, accumulating snow is also a possibility just north of the Great Lakes in Eastern Ontario, though confidence is also low here.
The West will remain in a quiet pattern as we close out the weekend, while a storm in the Far North will result in lingering snow showers across Southeast Alaska with heavier snow across the Interior of NW Canada in the Yukon and NW Territories.
Outlook for Tue (Oct 10) to Sat (Oct 14):
An active storm track is expected to set up over the Pacific Northwest and Western Canada during this period, with significant low-elevation rain expected while the higher elevations of the Cascades and British Columbia will likely see snow. A storm could also sneak into the Central/Northern U.S. Rockies around the middle of next week.
The East will see a cooler and drier pattern overall with prime leaf peeping conditions expected. New England could still see some lingering showers early in this period with a better chance of sunshine later in the week.
Thanks so much for reading! Next update on Friday (October 6).
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