Our Gold Sponsors

DEEP SNOW TO RETURN TO THE WEST

Summary:  It's still dumping over northern Oregon, and the central Panhandle of Idaho where some resorts are reporting double digits Sunday morning. More snow for early next week for OR/WA with a warm front and then the firehouse opens up late for the Sierra mid to late week. If you want to score the deepest snow and resorts, and chase as we do, join the concierge for your custom access to our forecasters (Custom planning and detailed forecasts minute by minute). Also if you want to Heli Ski in Alaska this season there are still a few open slots in March at our partner Heli Operations Alaska Backcountry Guides. If you book with them, we are giving away a free concierge membership. Dates open are 3/6-3/12 and 3/20-3/26 and in April 4/24-4/30. 

Powder Forecast:

The past 48 hours brought significant snowfall to Whistler with 18 inches and new terrain openings expected today. Washington looked great on totals, but chasing powder even for 1-2 foot storm totals came to a halt as warm air moved in Saturday creating and upside down layer of \"Funk\" on temps that spiked from 16 degrees at Stevens to 32 degrees in just 2 hours.  That's a very impressive rise in temps and I believe it kept lots of terrain closed due to avalanche conditions. I would have liked to have been at Whistler where temps remained cooler.

Temps in the Cascades plunged again Saturday night with most resorts on telemetry grabbing 3-7 inches of colder pow for Sunday (Might ski oddly with the warm layers below). Watching a powerful storm and making the decision \"not to chase\" is never an easy thing. Deepest spots will be found in central and northern Washington,Northern Idaho and western Canada from the past 24 hours. 

Western Reports Sunday morning

Whistler:  18 inches- clearing- Will be epic 

Mt Baker: 14 inches (30 inches in 3 days)- Was closed Saturday due to avalanche conditions opening Sunday

Silver Mountain (near Spokane) 15 inches- snowing

Lookout Pass 15 inches and still dumping 

Whitefish MT- 9 inches 

Eastern reports:

Sunday River 10 inches

Mad River Glen 9 inches

Below: Here is why we respect Ski Patrol and closures! These slides were patrol initiated at Snowbird on Saturday doing mitigation on the mid cirque traverse. You can see patrol to the right of the slide path. Another patrol cut track is seen headed into the fracture point (There were no injuries reported). 

 Photo: @powderchasersteve via instagram. 

\"\"

POWCAST:  

Snow continues on Sunday favoring the south/central Panhandle of Idaho near Lookout Pass and extending into Montana near the Missoula Mountains. Snow may be heavy at times especially in Idaho (5-10 additional). Snow will filter southwest towards central Idaho with a wildcard near Tamarack or McCall (Thin band of heavy snowfall might set up just north of the Ski areas). I would chase to the Panhandle for Sunday while it is still dumping. 

An interesting set up is happening in Oregon where snow will continue today for the northern mountains and then push north with a warm front into Monday for Washington. It's rare to see snow develop south and push due north. Southerly winds will favor White Pass, Crystal Mountain, and may even approach Stevens Pass for Monday/Tuesday. Unfortunately temps will rise once again so it may start out relatively light and fluffy but end on the denser side by late Monday or early Tuesday. These are wildcard chases. 

Below: Warm Front returns to OR/WA Monday morning and pushes temps up for the southern regions of the Cascade ranges (Temps are at 4800 feet in C). The snow levels might start out decent for southern Washington (3K) and rise somewhat into Tuesday. Generally rising to above 4K in Oregon by Tuesday and around 3500 towards Crystal or areas north. Bottom Line: Might be a bit upside down (Starts out cold and finishes warm) so be aware of increasing Avalanche danger and funk in the snow. Oregon resorts will see the highest totals in the double digits. 

\"\"

Below: Some heavy snowfall is possible at mid and upper elevations of northern Oregon and south/central Washington from late Sunday through late Monday with the warm front. Northern Oregon could score well into the double digits Sunday night to Monday (Mount Hood, Timberline Meadows). Snow will also be falling (Moderate) near Mt Bachelor and top out further north to Stevens Pass in Washington (Lower amounts). 

\"\"

 

The extended forecast brings in deep snow for the west and east so keep reading. 

Extended Pow:

Eyes are on a low pressure system approaching the Pacific for the middle of next week. A strong system may also move in for New England late week. 

Below: Low pressure approaching the west coast Wednesday December 22nd. Light to moderate snow is likely over many areas of the PNW, Northern Idaho, BC, and the Sierra. Steadier snow and perhaps heavier amounts may fall late Wednesday into Friday as the system moves inland over the Rockies (Thursday/Friday). 

\"\"

Low pressure will begin to impact the Pacific Northwest, BC, and the Sierra by Wednesday morning. Snow will be falling over many locations perhaps with some decent amounts in the western regions of BC or northern PNW. For the Sierra, the models show persistent snowfall from Wednesday through perhaps late next weekend with significant amounts (3-5 feet or more spread out over several days).  As this low moves towards the Rockies by late Wednesday or early Thursday it appears to bring moderate or heavy amounts of snow to the Sawtooth's of Idaho, and eventually the Tetons and Wasatch. Colorado will see snowfall beginning on Thursday morning and continuing into Friday (Southern areas are favored, including the western ends of I-70).

This system has a similar signature to the last storm that just pounded the Sierra and may produce similar totals in the Rockies that we saw last week. Below: Low confidence snow totals (We are still 3-7 days out) for the west through late Saturday next week. This should be a good snow producer. 

\"\"

New England:

Hey, east coast, a storm is likely again for XMAS so in looking out at model data some show a Southern storm over Massachusetts, southern VT, NH, ME, while other models push moisture north into the core of New England Ski Areas. Timing: Likely peaking on XMAS day. 

Below: Got to give these guys a ton of credit today for the dedication to ski in Massachusetts today while powder fell further north in New England. This is pure dedication! 1 inch new Sunday morning on a 12-14 inch base! Throw this guy a comment or a high five. Next weekend will hopefully look different. Photo: Jon Taunton Rigby at Wachusett Ski Area (Massachusetts) on Sunday December 19th. 

\"\"

 

Follow my adventures In travel and Powder on Instagram @powderchasersteve 

Enjoy the powder everyone, as it looks to be an active end to the next week. 

Please consider a donation to Powderchasers to keep these forecast going. We are a group of 4.5 (4 Forecasters and a dog). Donate here

Powderchasersteve 

 

 

DONATE TO POWDERCHASERS

Thank you so much, we couldn't do what we do with support from our readers.

Support our work
click here to donate

Our expertise gets you direct contact with our weather team to boost your next powder chases. From 2 to 14 chases, pick the concierge package that satisfies your powder hound!

  • Minute-to-minute snow + weather data
  • Tips + hacks on how to score first chair + where to park, stage + eat
  • Direct access to our Powederchasers
  • Sweet merchandise

POWDERCHASERS PASS OPTIONS - Buy + Save 10% on Concierge Trip Planning Packages

SHOP POWDERCHASERS GEAR

View all

ASK A POWDERCHASER

POWDERCHASERS SPONSORS

POWDERCHASERS PARTNERS

eco friendly ski/snowboard wax

Purl Wax

Purl Wax creates eco-friendly ski wax and snowboard wax with superior speed and durability. Biodegradable | No PFC's | No Toxic Chemicals | Made in the USA ...
Skis.com

Skis.com

Skis.com is a family owned company that has been in the ski industry for more than 50 years! Skis.com is a one stop shop online retailer for all your ski equipment and clothing needs!

Alaska Backcountry Guides

Alaska Backcountry Guides

Alaska Backcountry Guides, is a team of dedicated industry veterans. We offer semi-private and private heliski/snowboard trips in the heart of the Chugach mountains. With a maximum of 2 groups per helicopter, we are more nimble to explore the endless terrain that is at our doorstep, and you will never be waiting for the helicopter to take your next run. Alaska is known for its steep terrain, but we have plenty of intermediate terrain as well, and are able to cater to a range of ability levels. These trips are designed with the pandemic era in mind; we have private lodging, a personal chef, regular covid testing for staff/guides/guests, and small group riding to ensure an intimate and safe experience.

Beaver Mountain Ski Area

Beaver Mountain Ski Area

Beaver Mountain Ski Area has been family owned and operated for 81 years. Located in northern Utah we receive that great Utah powder. A great ski and snowboard experience without the prices or crowds of the big resorts.

Unofficial Networks

Unofficial Networks

In 2010, UnofficialNetworks.com was launched to cover the global ski scene with the rollout of local reporters in ski towns across North America. Since that time, the website has recorded hundreds of millions of sessions and has been linked to by numerous publications including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, The San Francisco Chronicle, and ESPN.

Indy Pass

Indy Pass

Chase powder to over 120 uncrowded, authentic destinations across the globe that offer you two ski days at each destination. 23/24 pass sales currently on hold!

TIRERACK.com

TIRERACK.com

TireRack.com is Powderchasers’ preferred tire supplier and their tires get us to the powder every single time. They’re America’s largest independent tire tester and consumer-direct source for tires, wheels and performance accessories.

This year, they’re making winter tire and wheel shopping even easier with their new Recommended Package feature. All you have to do is tell them a little bit about your vehicle, and they’ll automatically create a winter package for you. Find your Recommended Package.

Selkirk Powder

Selkirk Powder

Selkirk Powder provides cat, self-propelled, and snowmobile-assisted alpine ski excursions and guided snowmobile tours. A verified outfitter of Polaris Adventures, AIARE avalanche education Provider. With license and permits covering over 200,000 acres of the rugged and beautiful Selkirk Mountain range, SPC conveniently operates at Schweitzer in Sandpoint Idaho. Email Selkirk,;Call the Selkirk Reservation Line, and follow them on Instagram

The Mountain Collective

The Mountain Collective

The Mountain Collective™ boasts 24 dream ski destinations across the globe.


The pass includes two days of skiing or riding with no blackout dates at each of the 23 partners (46 total days), 50 percent discount on all additional days.

POWDERCHASERS POWDER CONCIERGE

View all