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Powder Watch- Warm Wet Storm Followed By Cold Canadian Air- Canada/PNW/Rockies/Sierra

Chase Recap: On Wednesday we chased to Beaver Mountain, our longest supporting sponsor. Family business since 1939! Full price tickets are only $70 bucks.  Beaver scored 20 inches of snow by noon Wednesday and provided some of the deepest turns we have had all season. Cherry Peak tied Beaver for snow totals (Most of the action was in far Northern Utah). Further south many resorts in Utah scored 7-14 inches. 

Below:  Beaver Mountain Wednesday morning with the new snow (15-20) and my Never Summer Kokhu in the foreground. This board provided fantastic float in the powder and was my first real test on this new design. 


Below: Steamboat wins for Thursday morning with 12-15 overnight. 

Forecast Summary:

Low pressure from the southern Pacific and a strong low over Canada will advance towards the West beginning Saturday night in BC, and the Cascades. Very cold air will accompany an arctic front pushing in from Canada later this weekend in the PNW and into the Sierra and Rockies by Tuesday next week. 


Currently the peak moisture from this storm (Several inches of liquid) appear to fall with the warmer air initially decreasing as the cold front moves in. It is likely that leftover moisture with this cold front could squeeze out some decent high quality totals on the backside of the deepest and warmer period of moisture by Monday. Moisture will be moving south into Oregon as well with higher totals noted in WA (Central and northern Cascades might be favored). 

We are watching Canada (BC and Alberta)  and the northern Cascades of Washington to have moisture peaking Saturday night to Sunday night with snow levels near 3800 to 4,000 initially but rising a bit on Sunday (Might go as high as 4800). Temps drop significantly late Sunday night to Monday morning where densities decrease. Total snowfall could exceed 20 inches at upper elevations especially in the northern Cascades. 

Below: Total snowfall for the PNW through Monday night favoring the northern and central Cascades with a bit less as you get south of I-90. Snow totals could be significant at upper elevations including the higher summits in western BC. Very cold temps move in Sunday night to Monday as precipitation continues at a lighter rate with higher quality powder. 

Bottom Line PNW:

 Good moisture totals, Very windy initially Sunday with the highest moisture totals and fairly high snow levels. Cold front and less wind on the backside with some better quality surprises possible by Monday in the PNW. Details on amounts TBD and especially chases looking for better quality as the cold front approaches the PNW Sunday night. All ski areas in the western Cascades from WA to OR will grab some much needed snow however temps and wind might create some issues initially. 


Some models show decent totals also falling near Sandpoint Idaho (Selkirk Powder Guides) Sunday/Monday with slightly cooler temps being inland. Snow will move south into the Sierra ranges and Rockies on Monday.

This post is sponsored by Selkirk Powder Guides in northern Idaho who have nearly 100% of their Cat terrain open. They are going to get some decent snow from this next storm and have decent elevation. They have midweek openings available. Mention Powderchasers and you will get a free Tee Shirt and PC stickers.

The Panhandle of Idaho extending into most of Northern Montana (Whitefish, Glacier National Park, Teton Pass Ski Area (Closed) and even the Montana Snowbowl could score some good numbers by Sunday night. This also starts with warming followed by cooling. 

The action moves south into the Sierra later Sunday night and into the Rockies on Monday/Tuesday. 

* Moisture starts out with high snow levels in the Rockies (7K or above and drops significantly by Tuesday.

* Most of the precipitation will fall with the warmer air

* Cold front with arctic air might bring some surprise high quality orographic snow to continue in some areas. We need to pin down the timing as we get closer. 

* There are wind and temperature risks with this storm especially with onset Monday.

Below: Cold arctic air racing over the PNW by late Sunday night and into the Sierra,  Idaho and the Tetons by Monday PM to Tuesday. Utah won't see the cold air until Tuesday with Colorado later Tuesday to Wednesday. 

Below: Total snowfall for the PNW through Monday night favoring the northern and central Cascades with a bit less as you get south of I-90. Snow totals could be significant at upper elevations including the higher summits in western BC. Very cold temps move in Sunday night to Monday as precipitation continues at a lighter rate. 


Below: Northern Idaho including the Panhandle extending into much of Northern Montana could land some high snow totals above 4,000 feet from this storm. Selkirk Powder is in the northern section of Idaho. Whitefish could also do very well at upper elevations from this storm. 


 Below: Temps at 10K feet in Utah Monday evening are a balmy -3C (26.6F). The cold air is noted pushing in from Wyoming and will reach Utah by Tuesday AM. This storm will be right side up but might pose some high avalanche risk due to the dense nature of the storm Monday and strong winds. 

Below: Colorado will also see significant moisture perhaps favoring the western areas a bit more (Steamboat, Aspen, CB, San Juan Range) but it is too early to forecast. The temps are very warm with the bulk of precipitation which leads us to use caution to jumping on sum totals since ratios will be low (Dense).

Help us out!

If you want to chase powder with Powderchasers sign up for the concierge package for the deepest resorts to chase to and 1:1 custom forecasting with our staff.  Also, if you have read this far, please donate  to continue receiving these free forecasts. We appreciate the community support. You won't regret chasing with our custom forecasts. We have new swag on the Powderchasers storefront and all larger donations include it at no charge. Always free shipping when you order our stickers!

We have new Powderchasers hats fresh off production for sale currently for just $27  (Very high quality with embroidery). 

LOTS of good deals from several of our sponsors using coupon codes and such! Up to 65% off blowout sale for Skis.com, 15% off your entire order for our newest sponsor Purl Wax, when using coupon code POWCHASERS at checkout. Fluoro free ski/snowboard wax hand poured in Colorado! Finally, coupon code POWDERCHASERS gives you free activation on your Zoleo satellite communicator! We highly recommend carrying a satellite communicator of some kind when traveling in the backcountry!

 Powderchaser Steve- Forecaster  @powderchasersteve @powderchasers





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