Friday, December 26, 2014
The Steamboat ski area reported 4” at mid and 3” up top this morning, and intermittent light snow is currently continuing with peeks of sun. The storm is currently directly overhead, and as it moves east, we should see snow showers increase later this afternoon and early evening as the flow eventually turns northwest. I still expect to see between 2” and 5” of snow reported Saturday morning.
Non-accumulating snow showers might be around early tomorrow morning as a weak trailing wave passes over the area and drags down another dose of arctic air. Showers will be ending by noon, if not before, with some sun in the afternoon, especially in the valley, though temperatures will be stay seasonably cold.
This brief break in snow will end when a storm currently in the Gulf of Alaska digs south along the west coast and brings more light snow into our area around Sunday morning. This storm is forecast to become cutoff from the main flow later in the weekend and meander in the Great Basin early in the workweek. Showers should become steadier by Sunday afternoon and continue through Tuesday. Snow amounts should be inflated due to the cold temperatures and resultant low densities, but amounts are expected to be generally modest. I would expect 4-8” by Monday morning and 2-5” for each of the Tuesday and Wednesday morning reports.
A dry trailing wave brings another push of reinforcing arctic air on New Years Eve day, and if skies clear overnight as currently forecast by some models, bitterly cold temperatures will follow for New Years Day. Again, the longer range models are struggling with the southern and western extent of the arctic air heading into the following weekend, so the forecast is uncertain for then.