You need to pick your chases wisely, as the deepest snow this week will not be the highest quality. The Northwest is wet and warm Tuesday but cold Wednesday with continuing snow showers. Interior Panhandle near Schweitzer is cooler with moderate to deep snow expected Tuesday that may linger into Wednesday. The Tetons grabbed another 4-7 inches (Daily story) and the Wasatch finally grabs a teaser Wednesday/Thursday. Interior BC is also in a scoring position. Where to go? No single answer.


My Short Term forecast will summarize the extensive data I have collected this morning on where to chase versus a full forecast for each region as its impossible to cover every resort. 

When looking at the models, I see 12-15 inches of dense snow for the Pacific Northwest through Tuesday evening (Rain might be falling at bases).  That's a red flag and AVY conditions are continuing to rise rapidly (Dense snow).  My gut tells me that some resorts will keep steeper terrain closed today. Stevens kept the backside as well as Double Diamond closed on Monday (Might repeat).  Colder temps by Wednesday with another 3-7 inches (The good stuff) for the NW is not enough to gamble a chase.  That said, a convergence zone with westerly winds could offer a surprise dump over Stevens Pass or more likely Alpental along I-90 into Wednesday morning (Good quality on top of mank).  I think the upper mountain will ski well in many areas on Wednesday.  The alternative?  Head inland to Schweitzer where 5-10 inches will fall on Tuesday and another 3-6 into Wednesday.  Higher amounts likely at the summit.  Oregon will also do well in this pattern albeit warmer with slightly lower amounts.  Oregon will outperform big time in the extended forcast.  

For the Rockies, the Tetons are on a break Tuesday with the next system due Wednesday and Thursday.  That system will also impact the Wasatch.  Storm ski the Tetons or Wasatch Wednesday (3-6) and hit powder again for Thursday morning (3-6).  I like the last chair Wednesday and 1st chair Thursday for the Tetons most (Storm totals 6-12).  The Wasatch will fall short but aim for Thursday where 6-9 inches are possible in many areas especially the Cottonwoods where amounts may be higher. 

Interior BC will also be on the colder end of the warm front (Coastal areas of the PNW) and should score 5-9 inches Tuesday and another 5-9 inches for Wednesday.  Totals near Revy and resorts south will be in the 10-18 inch range through Wednesday (split with AM and PM snow).  Temps are colder in the interior of BC so quality will be very high. 

 A piece of energy drops into the Sierra Thursday morning that drags along the California Coast. Its favoring western areas and skimming Tahoe with light to moderate amounts possible for 1st chair Thursday.



This pulls in a very deep moisture tap for the Pacific Northwest! Cold air will create epic conditions in the PNW this weekend with caveats being wind.   Some wind impacts on lifts may happen at times especially on Friday or early Saturday. Sunday might be the best day of the bunch. Snow begins Friday (the Last chair may offer some boot tops) and continues into the weekend (Heavy at times). 2 feet or more of high-quality snow will fall in the Cascades. Decent amounts will also trickle into the Panhandle of Idaho. 

This moisture trickles over the Rockies bringing moderate snowfall to the Tetons, Wasatch, Central Idaho and Colorado (Northern areas favored) for Saturday and Sunday. Both days will offer powder. 

Next Week

The trend for the PNW is for the moisture to continue into the following week with the GFS favoring Oregon significantly (Much less snow north of White Pass).  The Euro pushes moderate snow further north into the southern and central Cascades of WA but still favors Oregon.  I am confident that Oregon gets crushed big time from late this weekend into next week.  WA may do well towards White Pass with a Crystal wildcard. 

The Wasatch and Tetons and perhaps the northern Colorado mountains will be deep late this weekend into early next week. The deep snow from the southern Cascades will stretch East and dump continuous light to moderate snow into early next week.  Storm totals including the weekend into early next week will exceed 12-20 inches in some spots.  Aim to ride Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday for the deepest odds. 

When it's snowing in so many places it's hard to get into more details as to where to line up each day.   Please support Powderchasers by making a donation or joining the Concierge for your personal chase forecast. 

ANNOUNCEMENT - Ski Ride Tours chases powder with predetermined dates with last minute POW packages.  They have 1 spot left on a trip that begins this Wednesday (January 8-14) and will depart for the Pacific Northwest (Chasing Powder).   Its a bargain ar around $2700 that includes lodging, skiing, transportation, and airfare (varies slightly depending on airport).   Jump in now or check out the website for future powder trips. 

Enjoy the deep powder everyone! 

Powderchaser Steve 


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