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Spring fever ahead of unsettled weather starting Sunday

Thursday, March 5, 2020

A gorgeous warm and sunny day is in store for the Steamboat Springs area this Thursday, with that weather continuing through most of Saturday. By Sunday, several warm storms will increase precipitation chances through midweek, with our most significant precipitation starting around Wednesday and lasting into Thursday. Drier weather is then forecast for the end of the work week and heading into the following weekend.

A storm off the West Coast has forced a ridge of high pressure to form over the Rocky Mountains, bringing warm temperatures and sunny skies that are expected to last through at least part of Saturday.

The West Coast storm is forecast to elongate and weakly split along the coast on Saturday as another storm just upstream moves through the Gulf of Alaska. The northern part of the storm brings increasing clouds to our area by later in the day Saturday or early Sunday, though low-intensity precipitation will wait until later Sunday into Monday when the southern part of the storm moves across our region after incorporating some subtropical moisture. I’ll have a better idea of how much snow will fall from this storm by my next weather narrative scheduled for Sunday, but 2-5” of snow between Sunday and Monday afternoons is possible.

Meanwhile, the next storm is forecast to also split along the West Coast as it moves out of the Gulf of Alaska on Sunday. Waves of energy and moisture ejecting out of the southern part of the split and the proximity of the northern part of the split will keep unsettled weather weather around from Monday night through Tuesday night with small accumulations possible.

The southern part of the split storm is then forecast to shear to some degree as it moves over our area on Wednesday into Thursday. We’ll probably have our best snowfall during this time frame, though weather forecast models are struggling with the timing and evolution of this part of the storm, so changes in the weather forecast are likely.

Drier weather is forecast to return for the end of the work week and heading into the following weekend, with a much stronger and colder Pacific storm forecast to possibly affect our weather as soon as mid-weekend. We have lots of weather to get through before focus turns to that, though.

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