REVIEW OF LAST 1-2 WEEKS--
In an article written for the Stowe Reporter in Vermont a week ago, I referred to an old Irish New Year's expression "A Skier's Auld Lang Syne---Waist High Powder." I thought we were entering into a period for normal to above normal snowfall across much of the Rockies, Canada and New England and indeed we have.
Waist high powder has been common in much of New England, the Pacific Northwest and in many parts of Canada-especially British Columbia.
Over the past week, ski resorts such as Banff, Whistler, Panaroma and Fernie in Canada have seen in excess of 1-2 feet of snow. In fact, much of British Columbia is now seeing the best skiing of the winter with some places seeing 5 feet or more allowing for improved heli and backcountry skiing.
California, Oregon and Washington continued to get dumped on with a snow bases of an amazing 180" at Kirkwood, 156" at Alpine Meadows and 160" at Squaw Valley. Even Taos and Telluride are seeing good snows as of late with over a foot last week and more early this week.
Parts of New England have seen record snows with resorts such as Killington, Mt. Snow, Hunter Mountain, New York witnessing several feet in the last 2-3 weeks. Ski conditions are improving across northern New England as well due to the 1-2 foot snows this last weekend.
WEEKLY WEATHER OUTLOOK: Jan. 6, 2003
This week will start off with a big warming trend over the central and northern Rockies and the Pacific Northwest with temperatures averaging some 8-20 degrees above normal for this time of the year. Utah continues to see below normal snowfall and this will be the case for most of this week. The main weather action through mid-late week will again favor New England with another 4-10" of snow likely from Whiteface Mtn., Jay Peak to Stowe by later in week. This will be along an arctic front, which will bring lake effect snow to many areas in the east by Thursday and Friday.
By this weekend, a weak disturbance will be sliding in off the Pacific that may bring some snows to Utah, Colorado and Nevada. Today's map, valid for Saturday January 11, illustrates a storm system heading toward the Cascades and British Columbia again, as well as a disturbance over Colorado and Utah. The green areas represent light-moderate snows and the purple areas heavy precipitation off the coast of Oregon and Washington.
Though I don't expect the stellar snow amounts measured in feet to effect the Pacific Northwest and Canada, there should be 5-12" in this area by later in the week and weekend. Snowbird, Alta to Vail and Cooper Mt. should get hit with some of this snow. Big Sky, Grand Targhee and Sun Valley will also see some weekend snowfall, though again, temperatures the first part of this week look like spring.
Overall, however, this week will feature below normal snowfall over at least 70 percent of the west. Colder weather with below normal snowfall will influence Alberta Thursday through the weekend.
Look for big snows and colder weather for much of Europe. Some sections along the French and Swiss Alps have been hurting for snow and some important ski events have been cancelled. The odds for significant snow will increase with several feet likely in parts of Austria, Germany, France and Switzerland by Thursday. Next week will feature a warming trend in Europe.
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