Quiet work week weather followed by big storm next weekend

Sunday, January 14, 2018

A ridge of high pressure over the West Coast will yield to incoming Pacific energy by the end of the work week before a likely significant storm for the Steamboat Springs area starts around next weekend.

The currently warm temperatures and sunny skies will give way to some clouds and slightly cooler temperatures on Monday as a wave of energy travels down the east side of the ridge and grazes our area.

Tuesday will be mostly sunny ahead of some clouds and seasonably warm temperatures forecast for Wednesday and Thursday as incoming Pacific energy interacts with and weakens the ridge of high pressure, which will have moved eastward over the Intermountain West.

Weather models agree that a large winter storm will cross the West Coast around midweek and bring breezy to windy west-southwesterly flow over Colorado on Friday. As the storm crosses the Great Basin on Friday, it mixes with some cold air from western Canada and strengthens. There is uncertainty with the timing and evolution of the storm, but right now I expect that snow showers should start later Friday ahead of the storm, with snows likely turning moderate to heavy Friday night or Saturday as a cold front first stalls over our area and then moves southward.

There will be plenty of moisture and energy moving over our area, and it is not clear yet if the mountain-top flow swings to the northwest for enhanced precipitation, but snow amounts over a foot between Friday night and Sunday morning are possible.

The storm train may finally get started this winter season as another possibly significant storm gathers strength in the Gulf of Alaska. There is a break in the weather advertised for early in the next work week before the Gulf of Alaska weather-maker may bring another round of snows to the west around midweek.

Save your soles! If you do any walking in your ski boots on hard surfaces, then you know the grating and grinding sounds you hear can’t be good. In fact, worn boot soles make your binding unsafe as it interferes with the boot-binding interface. Cat Tracks¬†are a flexible protector that keeps your boot soles pristine, and adds a cushion for walking comfort. When it’s time to click into bindings, I take them off and stash them in my coat pocket. Yaktrax are similar, but I have not used them since they appear they would take up a bit more space in my jacket pocket. But you get a rocker sole that promotes a natural stride which may be worth the space sacrifice. If I did not have to carry them around all day, these would be my choice.

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