Winter-like weather turns summer-like around midweek

Monday, May 1, 2017

Winter looks to be finally done with us by midweek, but not before another disturbance in cool northwest flow moves over the Steamboat Springs area on Tuesday. Showers will start in the morning and continue through the day, and though we may see the last snowflakes of the season in the Yampa Valley near the beginning of the storm and again near the end of the storm Tuesday evening, accumulating snows of 2-5” will be confined to elevations above 8000′.

If skies clear by Wednesday morning, temperatures will start out quite chilly with some moderate warming during the day that will bring temperatures towards average.

More pronounced warming will increase temperatures to above average on Thursday and even warmer summer-like temperatures are expected to last through the weekend as a deep and strong closed low that is cut off from the Pacific jet stream forms over southern California late in the weekend

It’s meteorologically remarkable that we flip from a long-lasting winter-like pattern to a summer-like pattern in a few short days, but the southwest flow ahead of the eventual southern California cutoff low will bring an increase in atmospheric moisture that will begin our thunderstorm season. These are expected as soon as Saturday afternoon, with coverage, intensity and duration increasing on Sunday and Monday as waves of energy eject out of the loitering cutoff low to our southwest.

It looks like we go from cold and wet to warm and wet as that cutoff low will continue to influence our weather during next week. There is model disagreement as to when that cutoff low moves east, but models have the storm moving near or over Colorado sometime during next week.

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