Powder for the Sierra, Cascades, and the Rockies late this week.


An approaching system will overspread snowfall into the Cascades and Sierra Thursday/Friday with moderate amounts due for the Tetons and Wasatch by Saturday. Please consider a donation to Powderchasers if you are scoring powder this season or living the vicarious dream. 


A departing system in the 4 corners has left Taos with 14 inches of powder for Wednesday morning. Also, decent amount fell in southern Summit County in Colorado with between 5-10 inches being reported at Keystone, A-Basin, and Loveland. That was a surprise being this system was favoring the southern mountains and areas east along I-25 (South of Pueblo). 

Here is the current map showing total water content as a percent of normal for much of the west. Notice that Colorado has jumped up to near normal in many areas. Most areas in the Rockies are near or just above normal while the Pacific Northwest is well above. 


Last weekend's storm for Colorado really helped many areas that had not seen any significant snow in several weeks. Here is a reader-submitted photo from Winter Park last Sunday. Rider: August Bell-Austin Texas


In searching for powder this week the action will begin in the Pacific Northwest where steady light or moderate snow and cold temps will bring good quality pow to Washington and Oregon. This might favor Oregon somewhat on amounts. While amounts won't be deep in any 12 hour period, the sum totals could be decent into the weekend with another surge due early next week. Temps are cold so quality will be premium. 

For the Sierra, the forecasted system impacts the area Thursday night into Friday. While most ski areas will see snowfall, the amounts will be on the light or moderate side below 7,000 feet with warmer temps. Above 7,000 feet might see 5-11 inches by 10 AM on Friday. The models seem to favor areas along the southern flanks of the lake (Kirkwood) and into Mono County (Mammoth). Some isolated areas at the peaks might see 9-14 inches by midday Friday. The Good: Timing is ripe for overnight pow. The Bad: Warmish temps will limit snowfall especially at lower elevations. 

in the Rockies, moisture from the Sierra will stream over central Idaho late AM Friday favoring the McCall area and the Sawtooths (Sun Valley and north) for some light or moderate snow. The Tetons and Wasatch stand a good chance of a decent dose of powder for Saturday morning. Warm temps may limit amounts at the bases. That system has the potential to bring 6-12 inches to some areas above 9,000 feet by Sunday, especially in the Wasatch range. Snow quality will likely be on the surfy side. Amounts could be decent for the Cottonwoods, with a refresh likely for Jackson Hole Mountain Resort and perhaps Targhee. 

Below: Total precipitation (Liquid) through Saturday morning for Wyoming and Utah. Colorado will see some snowfall later in the period but amounts will be less. 


Colorado will grab leftovers Saturday/Sunday with the models not leading me to believe in any significant amounts. However, the plumes from the University of Utah indicate 4-8 inches is possible through Sunday afternoon in some areas favoring the northern mountains. 

Enjoy the powder everyone! 

Powderchaser Steve 

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