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Steamboat Springs area short term weather forecast from Thursday night

Thursday, March 17, 2016

At 8 pm, I have about 5” of snow on my deck that fell in the last 3.5 hours hours or so and the Steamboat Powdercam has about the same. Satellite shows a ribbon of convection extending across northern Colorado, and the snowfall forecast will largely depend on how long this band sticks around. The short range model has this band dissipating around around mid-evening, which would mean another couple of inches, so I would expect 9-15” on the morning ski report including the 4” or so we had during the day today. Showers will decrease tonight and taper off during the day, especially in the valleys. The strong winds over the past few days will finally begin to moderate during the day.

Dry air looks to invade the area by Saturday with temperatures staying cool before warming occurs late in the day and more so on Sunday. Monday will also be warm before another Pacific storm threatens the area either later in the day or Tuesday.

Steamboat Springs area short term weather forecast from Wednesday night

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

A moderately strong wave in cool and moist northwest flow has sagged further south than earlier models forecast and will bring another round of snowfall to the area in continued windy conditions tonight and tomorrow. There will likely be a lull in snowfall this evening before snows pick up again after midnight and continues through the day Thursday.

Again, being an orographic or terrain-driven event, there will be more snow at the higher elevations. I would expect 1-3” in Steamboat by Thursday morning and 5-10” for the morning ski report. Though snow showers will continue in Craig and Steamboat during the day, accumulations should be minimal. The mountain, however, will likely see an additional 2-5” during the day, with some of that hopefully producing Steamboat Magic. This is what I call the period of time after the 5am report and before skiing starts where the skied snow is magically several inches deeper than the report.

I am still uncertain about the Thursday night wave. Current forecasts have 1-4” overnight Thursday for the Friday morning ski report with showers tapering off during the day, especially in the valleys, but if the wave travels just a bit further west and south, we could get double that. The strong winds over the past few days will finally begin to moderate during the day.

Regardless, dry air looks to invade the area by Saturday with temperatures staying cool before warming occurs late in the day. Sunday and Monday stay dry and very warm before another Pacific storm threatens the area starting Tuesday.

Steamboat Springs area short term weather forecast from Tuesday night

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Snow showers will continue overnight as an advertised wave of energy passes through. Short range models have snowfall for our area decreasing after midnight as the main moisture plume stays to our south, though it may increase again for a time early in the morning. I would expect another inch in Craig, around 1-3” in Steamboat and 4-8” of low-density snowfall on the mountain by Wednesday morning in continued windy conditions.

There will be lulls in snowfall on Wednesday and Thursday, especially in the valleys, as hard-to-time wave periodically enhance showers, with accumulations on the hill in the 1-4” range.

A final wave is forecast to pass through the area late Thursday or Thursday night and has potential to bring a final round of snow to the area for Friday morning. Their is disagreement among the models as to how far south and west this wave extends and thus the amount of snow we are forecast to receive. Regardless, snow showers will diminish through the day Friday, especially in the valleys.

Warming and drying commences in earnest for Saturday and likely lasts through Monday.

Steamboat Springs area short term weather forecast from Monday night

Monday, March 14, 2016

Snows started later than I thought today as a very dry lower atmosphere conspired with spottier-than-forecast moisture to reduce snowfall from this part of the storm. While the atmosphere is still unstable and prone to another wave of moderate to heavy showers this evening, it appears that we will have a lull in snowfall sometime after midnight to near sunrise Tuesday. Accordingly, the forecast snow is reduced and will be around an inch in Hayden 1-3” in Steamboat and 5-10” on the mountain.

Snow showers will continue during the day Tuesday becoming more numerous and stronger in the afternoon and overnight as another wave of energy passes through around sunset. I would expect another inch in Craig, around 1-3” in Steamboat and 5-10” on the mountain by Wednesday morning.

There may be lulls in snowfall on Wednesday, especially in the valleys, as hard-to-time wave periodically enhance showers. A final wave is forecast to pass through the area around Thursday or Thursday night and has potential to bring a final round of snow to the area for Friday morning. Their is disagreement as to whether this wave will be far enough south to significantly affect our area.

Drying and warming is advertised for the weekend.

Steamboat Springs area short term weather forecast from Sunday night

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Snow showers on the hill should begin by sunrise, becoming moderate to heavy by noon as rain showers turn to snow in the valley. Winds will increase through the day becoming very windy and creating blowing snow, making travel difficult. Additionally, locally intense snowfall with the some thunder may be possible later in the afternoon as the atmosphere destabilizes.

The surface cold front passes through later in the day and brings favorable wet, cool and windy northwesterly flow over our area overnight Monday. Current forecasts have around 3-6” in Steamboat and 1-3” in Craig and are pointing toward the possibility of as much as 8-16” on the hill by Tuesday morning, though some models have a drier mountain-top flow which may reduce accumulations by 2-4”.

The first part of the storm on Monday introduces a long duration event comprised of several waves of moderate to heavy snowfall that will last through the entire work week. Snow showers will continue in the valleys on Tuesday and snowfall should continue on the hill with current forecasts having as much as 5-10” of additional snow by Wednesday morning.

Snow showers in the valleys and snows on the hill will continue through Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, keeping accumulations going each day.

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