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Powder Outlook for the West

According to our powder forecaster, much anticipated storms might be heading toward the Sierra, the Wasatch, and the Rockies by this weekend.
posted: 02/05/2010
Powder Forecast

After a fairly quiet week with the exception of over a foot of new snow in the Wasatch last Sunday andMonday and up to nine inches at Grand Targhee, it appears that the pattern should bring snow to most areas by this weekend especially late Saturday through Monday. The moisture that blessed the Wasatch last weekend fizzled as it hit Colorado and totally blew my powder alert for the northern mountains. Monday was deep at Snowbird as the snow report of three inches turned into 12 to 15 with areas not opened from the previous day.

Light snow will begin in the Sierra by Thursday night and gradually turn heavy by Friday night and Saturday (Saturday would be the perfect day there with low snow levels). In the Rockies, light snow should be numerous on Saturday morning and will eventually turn heavy late Saturday and Sunday under southwesterly flow with a high chance of significant snow in the San Juans (Silverton, Wolf Creek, up to Crested Butte, and perhaps Aspen). The Wasatch will have moderate snow through the period perhaps turning heavy on Sunday.

The flow turns north/northeast on Sunday and Monday in the Rockies with a sharp cold front which could enhance snowfall especially over central Colorado and the Front Range by Monday morning. We have not issued any powder alerts for the Divide in a long time however my suspicion at this point is that Loveland and Winter Park might finally get some decent snow late in the weekend.

In Utah my suspicion is that they will see a prolonged event of three to six inches each 24-hour period starting on Saturday with a chance of heavier snowfalls by Sunday morning. Southwest flow could be decent there however most of the energy will be towards the South. —Powderchaser Steve

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