Unsettled week ahead with snow likely on Friday

Monday, April 17, 2017

An energetic and progressive Pacific jet stream will send several waves of energy over the Steamboat Springs area this week, with breaks in the weather appearing between the storms on Tuesday and Thursday.

The first weak wave is currently moving across the Montana - Wyoming border and has brought breezy conditions with some clouds today.

Meanwhile, a strong storm in the Gulf of Alaska has mixed with some cold air leaking westward from a relatively persistent late-season Hudson Bay vortex. Tuesday looks to be a warm and dry day before some energy ejects from the Gulf of Alaska storm and grazes northern Colorado Tuesday night. Several inches of snow are possible above 9000′ overnight and into Wednesday morning, with rain showers likely for the Yampa Valley.

Thursday should be an in-between day with some light rain showers possible before additional upstream energy from the Pacific dislodges the cold Gulf of Alaska storm and moves it across the Great Basin during the day.

There is a fair bit of uncertainty for Friday and Saturday with respect to the storm’s structure and its southern extent, but we will be cold enough for snow down to the valley floor on Friday and likely Saturday as well. The storm is forecast to move across our area in several pieces, with the heaviest snow currently expected overnight Thursday into Friday morning, with significant accumulations possible at the higher elevations. Unsettled and cool weather will persist for Friday and Saturday, with a trailing wave increasing the likelihood of stronger snow showers later Saturday.

A warm and dry Sunday is advertised by the models ahead of another possible quick-moving storm for Monday.

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