Bluebird Days. Light Snow.

The weather pattern hasn’t changed much in the past week as the jet stream set-up has continued to feature a cold trough over the western half of the country and a milder to warm ridge over the eastern half.  It has been another snowy week in the West, although amounts of fresh snow have been a little less than the prior week.  In the Midwest, Southeast, and Northeast it has been a warm week, and both base snow and trail counts have taken a hit.  Changes in the pattern are underway, however, as low pressure centers that get ejected out of the western trough head northeast and mount an attack on the ridge.  The ridge is formidable though, and it won’t back down without a fight.  It will take three surface storms to knock down the ridge enough to cool the atmosphere sufficiently for snow to fall instead of rain.  That third storm will impact the Northeast later this weekend and into next week and could possible represent the final opportunity for significant snowfall, as the pattern will shift to a warmer regime right after Easter.  Here is a look at a snowfall forecast through Tuesday morning.

You’ll notice that New Hampshire and Maine look like the big winners.  That is because one low pressure center will move through Ontario as it weakens with a secondary low center taking shape over Cape Cod before it moves through the Gulf of Maine, strengthening as it does.  That track will most benefit the White Mountains and the resorts of Maine.  After picking up very little snow in the past three weeks, and with Easter weekend on the horizon, a healthy shot of snow would help sustain quality skiing and riding through the holiday.  Some light snow will accompany the passage of another trough and cold front on Good Friday and that will help refresh the surfaces, as well.

In the West, the persistent trough will produce its final shot of snow late this week (especially in CO and WY) setting the stage for a wonderful weekend with bluebird skies dominating as the trough swings out of the region and into the center of the country.  A new trough will arrive next week, however, bringing early week snow to the Northwest and midweek powder to the full length of the Rockies.  Here is a snowfall forecast through Friday for the West.

The amounts you see are pretty much split between the end of this week and the week of the 29th.

Many of the resorts in the Midwest have closed, but the larger areas are still open.  Some light snow amounts will fall across the northern Great Lakes later this weekend.  In the Southeast, about a half dozen resorts are still operating, thanks to high base elevations and aggressive snowmaking through the season.  That snow can’t hold on much longer against the strength of Old Sol, though.

REGIONAL HIGHLIGHTS:

Pac NW/B.C.:

Beautiful weekend on the slopes.  Light to moderate fresh snow early next week keeps the powder party going.

Central and Southern Sierra:

Great spring skiing this weekend. Back door cold front turns it a little colder next week, but no significant snow in sight.

Rockies:

Sunny weekend on the slopes.  New trough delivers light to moderate snow from MT to NM first half of next week. Light snow next weekend in northern resorts.

Midwest:

Light snow across the far north this weekend.  Mild start/colder finish next week with another round of light snow.

Northeast:

Spring conditions rule after mild, damp week.  Opportunity for meaningful snow late this weekend/early next week in northern NY and northern New England.  Another round of light snow late week.

Mid-Atlantic/Southeast:

Great spring skiing Saturday (3/27).  Colder air mass arrives later Sunday.  Spring skiing continues next week. Call resort before you drive, though.

 

2 Comments

  1. Avatar Richard Kavey says:

    Herb, Great forecasting! I enjoy you’re column and the reasoning employed. All the best! Richard

  2. Avatar Herbert Stevens says:

    Thank you very much, Richard!

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