What a horrible run of unfavorable weather. It's hard to remember a period with so little snow like this in many areas of the west. There have been a few storms in the last month, but they were mostly confined to specific regions and also had some issues. At least Wolf Creek and Taos scored deep days last week. New England scored deep blower freshies as well! Nicely done. We would've liked to have been at either place for those storms.
Well we're afraid today's news isn't much better. For the Western US, it will stay mostly dry for at least another week, with some hope for a storm around Valentines Day. Beyond that, the models are not all that clear, so all we can really do is wait.
Let's take a quick peak at the upper level of the atmosphere for the next 10 days. A scary strong dome of high pressure will develop and strengthen over the next week. There could be some record breaking warmth in California, sadly, with summer like temperatures reaching the 90s in SoCal. Ew. It will keep the West dry for the foreseeable future. The models do agree, however, of at least a temporary break down of this ridge around Valentines day. At the moment though, this brief pattern change looks to favor the areas that have been on the right side of the storm track of late. This includes the PNW and front range of the Rockies.
(Image courtesy of Tropical Tidbits)
It's still over a week away though, so the storm track has time to adjust. We really need a westward/southward shift to get California, Utah, and Arizona back in the mix. It has just been far too long between storms.
First, there is a chance for some light to moderate snow along the front range of the Rockies later this week, as the storm track lies to the east of the continental divide. If we get really lucky the position of the ridge will adjust to the west a bit, and the storm will strengthen and deliver more than just light snow later this week.
The better looking storm should arrive in the PNW on Sunday, and then work its way inland. The track currently favors more snow for Washington, BC, N- ID, and MT, who have been able to eek out some snow lately. What we really need though is the ridge over the Western US to shift substantially to the West, allowing for the storm track to center over the region. This Valentine's Day storm doesn't look overly impressive 7+ days out, but the potential exists for at least a moderate snowfall. We will certainly update you on this storm as it gets closer. Below is the GFS' current estimate for the 3 day snowfall totals ending February 16th.
As mentioned, a speck of light.
Meanwhile, we are still chasing pow in Europe. After a couple days in Italy, we are back in Austria once again for another snowstorm. Here is a clip from our couple of days riding at Zauchensee last week.
That's all for now. It's 11:30 PM here in Austria and we have powder to rest up for. Ciao!