It's a bit of a gloomy forecast with the exception of the Cascades and Western Canada that grab a quick hitter Saturday PM. New England finally grabs a bit more snow for Monday and a deeper storm for Wednesday into Thursday. The west might get active again in the last days of January and early February. See our new clothing link at the bottom of this post (Powderchasers Storefront).
The only option for moderate snow in the next 24 hours is in the PNW where models are still not confident about an exact solution. Timing is ripe for mid-afternoon snowfall into Saturday night favoring the central or southern Cascades of Washington (Stevens Pass, I-90 Resorts, Crystal, White Pass) with a bit less toward Mt Baker or in the northern Oregon mountains. My best guess is 4-9 inches from Saturday afternoon to Sunday morning. If a convergence zone forms with W or NW winds some areas could report higher totals Sunday morning. Bottom Line: Chase worthy storm since not much else is on the horizon for the west. Not overly deep. Good timing (Saturday mid-afternoon to Sunday). Not worth a long-range chase. Models are not in synch for who will see the deepest totals (Central versus southern regions). Northern Oregon may also end up in the sweet spot.
Below: Total snowfall in the Cascades through Saturday night favoring the Volcanos near Mt Rainier, with moderate snow for Crystal. Other data shows this band of heavier snow pushing north to I-90 or Stevens Pass (There is uncertainty). The best guess is 4-9 inches for most ski areas in southern or central Washington with less to the north near Baker. Higher amounts are possible if a PSCZ sets up along I-90 or north to Stevens Pass. Temps are cold with high quality.
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Below is a Recent photo from Selkirk Powder Guides.
New England scored 4-8 inches for many mountains on Friday and another storm is headed their way for Sunday night. This is a warm storm with temps near Freezing for many areas of New England and in the 32-34 degree range closer to the coast (Southern New Hampshire, Seacoast, Southern Maine coast). Some mixed precipitation is possible in these areas. Elsewhere my forecast is going with 5-9 inches with the highest numbers likely coming from southern Vermont (Mt Snow, Stratton, Okemo) Berkshires (Wildcard), and even resorts near North Conway which are on the cusp of the better moisture just south or west towards Gunstock (Warmer temps). Bottom Line: Chase south and be in position for Monday morning. Not an overly deep storm. Good base building density with near-freezing temps for most ski areas. A better storm is likely midweek.
Below: The next storm for New England favors southern areas Sunday night into Monday (Good timing). This is a warm storm.
Below: Temps are above freezing Sunday night along the coast but should be an all-snow event for Vermont and most of New Hampshire with perhaps mixed precipitation south of Manchester or Gunstock (On the cusp).
Below: Current Snowpack is very healthy (200% or higher on average) in most areas of the west, especially the Sierra, and the central Rockies. Near normal or slightly below conditions exist in the PNW and Northern Rockies and the far southern regions (Snowpack).
In the Rockies, the low-pressure system from the PNW this weekend takes a southerly route into the 4 corners next week. The low dives south and spreads some light snow north into New Mexico with scraps for the Rockies or Front Range next week. The models showed a decent chance of light or moderate snow for the Front Range Sunday night into Monday. Unfortunately, the models spiraled down on Saturday morning with lower confidence for any appreciable snowfall. Temps will remain cold, with very little moisture to work with and the low diving south. There is simply not a ton to talk about this week, but let's look at the extended models that have a return to some unsettled conditions towards the end of January.
Below: The PNW low dives south of the region by early next week with some light snow noted in New Mexico and light leftovers elsewhere (Map- Monday evening January 23). Some scraps will work north into Colorado on Monday.
Light snow is possible to overspread the Rockies again mid-next week with minimal accumulations. Taos could sneak out 2-4 inches by Wednesday but otherwise no significant events to talk about in the west.
New England looks to grab a deeper and colder storm from Wednesday night to Thursday. This might be a chase-worthy event.
Below: Confidence Is low being 5-6 days out, with 24-hour snow totals from Wednesday PM to Thursday looking decent for most of New England next week. This is good news if the models hold up. This will also have an associated cold front with better density than the current storms.
Models are showing high pressure possibly buckling somewhat over the Rockies late next week and a return to some unsettled conditions for much of the west into early February.
Below: Weak low pressure pushing east to west over the eastern or central Rockies late next week (January 29). The far west may stay dry.
Below: Better signal for a decent low to form over the west in the first few days of February (the Map is February 1st). Confidence is never high this far out, but at least it's a good signal.
The first week of February might stay active for the west.
Follow my adventures in travel and powder on Instagram @powderchasersteve. I am going to be posting some street photos from Laos in the next few days.
Remember to donate to Powderchasers if you are reading this forecast or feel free to join our custom concierge program (Steer you to the deepest snow with custom chases).
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