The search is on for some decent quality powder. Temps are on the warm side for all areas of the west. The snow level tonight will be around 7000 feet for the Wasatch (Just below the base of Alta), and up to 8-9,000 feet for Colorado (Welcome to Spring). However, if you are looking for the best odds of deep cream head to Utah now and score up to 10 inches at the highest elevations for Wednesday morning. The weekend will be cooler with snow continuing in the Sierra and ramping up in the Cascades and BC. The Rockies cool slightly with a chance of decent powder by Sunday. The extended looks exciting.
Snow will be falling in the Sierra (7,000 feet snow level) and Wasatch in the next 24 hours. Utah is likely to land 6-11 inches by Wednesday mid-morning with rain falling just 1,000 feet below the bases (Cottonwoods). Expect dense cream at lower elevations and high-density powder at the summits of the Cottonwoods. Elsewhere, elevations are too low, however, due to wind direction, it's possible that the summit of Deer Valley or even Park City score a surprise (Rain/snow mix at the bases). The Tetons will see light or moderate snow at the summits (JHMR favored) with 3-6 inches likely by late Wednesday.
Colorado is very warm with snow levels rising to 8-9,000 feet. Snow will be falling on Tuesday favoring the northern mountains near Steamboat. 2 inches has fallen at the summit since 5 AM Tuesday. Snow increases Tuesday afternoon over Colorado so if you have any shot of riding some smooth powder it's going to be Wednesday morning. The models are not exciting, however, one run of them this morning showed some enhancement near the Front Range resorts. Perhaps watch Loveland as a wildcard for Wednesday morning. There will be ripples of light snowfall for the remainder of this week with timing difficult to pinpoint. There is no single deep period. Wednesday morning may see some reports in the 3-6 inch range (Some snow from PM Tuesday).
The Sierra is \Ditto\" with more high elevation snow above 7,000 feet (4-8). Could be fun at the summits!
The Cascadesget very active this week. Periodic snow showers above 5,000 feet will favor the northern regions (Mount Baker) through Sunday. The highest intensity will happen at some point this weekend when snow levels fall to around 4,000 and higher amounts are likely. The northern Cascades could pick up 7-15 inches of new snow through the week (Possibly higher amounts). Central and southern areas will see less (3-10 elevation dependant). Aim for lateweek or the weekend when the temps cool slightly. Prior to the weekend, the snow levels are too high (5-5500K) Whistlermay see similar amounts to the northern Cascades of WA at the summits. it's going to be a slow process with a decent sum total through the week (Light to moderate snow each day for the summit of Whistler favoring late week or the weekend).
The weekend shows hope for a moist system for the Sierra(Snow levels dropping to 6500-7,000) and the Rockies. There is decent moisture that may favor the Tetons or Wasatch(Models are not in synch) and some cooler air, especially on Sunday noted in Wyoming. If moisture continues to fall with the cooler temps it's possible that some areas of Utah and Wyoming deliver a decent day this weekend. Expect a repeat performance of the midweek storm for the Rockies with dense snow, and slightly cooler temps for Sunday. Colorado will grab the leftovers late Saturday or Sunday.
BONUS: In looking at the long term operational and ensembles there is agreement that a decent looking trough with cold air slams into the west in the April 9-12 timeframe. It is possible that significant snowfall occurs at some point during that period. Its too far out to put high confidence in it, but my gut tells me that this period will bring a return of winter-like conditions for much of the west. \"Not andApril Fools Joke\"
Below: Long range ensembles showing a decent Trough in the west for mid to late next week.
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