POWDER WATCH- COLORADO, MONTANA, IDAHO, WYOMING, UTAH WILDCARD.
Snow is falling heavily in the southern Cascades this morning (Crystal is at 10-11 inches as of 8AM at the summit) with cold temperatures that fell through the night. Cold temps will bring great quality to most of the PNW today through Wednesday as light to moderate snow continues favoring the southern and central Cascades of Washington. Baker had nearly a foot last night on top of mid to lower elevation rain that fell on Monday.
Moisture from the Northwest will impact most of central Idaho late today through Wednesday where 1st chair may find some decent surprises around Brundage (3-6) that continues for most of the day. Moisture will also be falling under westerly flow over the Tetons tonight trough Wednesday night. Expect light to moderate amounts tonight (3-6) with an additional 2-4 during Wednesday. Amounts will depend on how far cold air dips into the Tetons. Current models show Jackson in the cold pool with warmer air to the south. This will increase snow ratios and could produce higher amounts. Most snow that does fall will happen Tuesday night.
Late week will feature some light snow for Colorado (2-4) favoring the northern mountains. Spots north of I-70 may see an isolated 3-5 inches by late Thursday (Steamboat, Winter Park). Most of this light snow will be falling late Wednesday through Thursday.
The headline news may end up being this weekend into next week. Its too far out to forecast with confidence. My confidence is high that very cold air is going to pump into most of Montana for the weekend. Snow will be falling in northern areas by Friday and increasing towards the Bozeman area late Friday/Saturday. Bitter cold temps will drop into the northern Rockies and enhance snowfall through most of north central Montana. Far western areas may stay in the warm sector. North or NW winds will favor Bridger Bowl. Cold air and moisture may drop into the Tetons this weekend with unfavorable wind direction (NW will favor Targhee, but North and NE will put highest amounts north and east of Jackson). Winds are variable between N, NW, and NE during the period.
Colorado may benefit from this pattern for the weekend (Moderate snow likely especially northern mountains). Long term models show a possibility of heavier snow falling over Colorado Sunday-Wednesday next week. The message is for an increasing chance of decent snowfall for Colorado especially late this weekend into next week. This year has seen models flip flopping even 24 hours before a forecast period. I am trending cautiously optimistic.
The Wasatch will play into the mix getting brushed late this week followed by higher confidence for next week.
Image: Project storm track and snowfall ending February 11- WX Bell (Confidence on amounts is low to moderate at this point due to duration of models with higher confidence in storm track next week).
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