Thursday, January 15, 2015
A ridge currently over the Great Basin will keep sunny skies over our area today and deflect most incoming Pacific energy to our north and east. Some of this energy will graze the area, with clouds increasing ahead of the first wave during the day Friday and light snow developing by Friday night. Light snow will continue into Saturday morning with minimal accumulations before a quick moving ridge behind the departing wave brings the sun back in the afternoon.
After a clear and cool Saturday night, clouds will move back into the area Sunday morning or early afternoon ahead of a series of grazing waves in northwest flow that will keep light snow in the forecast for Sunday afternoon through Tuesday. Snow amounts for Monday and Tuesday are expected to be light and in the 1-4” range.
Model uncertainty is large by Wednesday as the Great Basin ridge rebuilds westward near the west coast. All models predict some some mixing between the relatively warm and wet Pacific airmass as it travels over or through this ridge and the very cold and dry arctic airmass currently entrenched in the northern Canadian plains and resupplied by the Hudson Bay vortex.
Our weather next week and likely beyond will very much depend on the outcome of this battle between the west coast ridge and the Hudson bay vortex. Furthermore, the battle line is forecast to oscillate around our area, meaning a small change in the location of this battle will mean large changes in our forecast weather.