Light snows to start the week

Sunday, January 24, 2021

Mostly sunny skies and a temperature of 24 F are over the Steamboat Springs area this Sunday noon. A couple of storms will bring light snows and cooler temperatures to our area on Monday and Tuesday ahead of dry weather and warming temperatures for the rest of the work week. A modest storm is then forecast for the following weekend.

Snow totals from Friday morning through this morning totaled 6” at mid-mountain and 11” up top in the generally southwest flow associated with the storms. While Steamboat is most favored with northwest flow, the location of the stationary front, some instability and storm energy was sufficient for a modest storm that produced dense snowfall in relatively warm temperatures.

Skies have cleared ahead of another couple of storms that will pass to our south on Monday and Tuesday; in fact the cloud shield associated with the first storm is currently visible to our south. Clouds will increase later today with light snow possible today and tomorrow, leaving 1-4” by Monday night.

The storm for Tuesday is currently sliding down the Pacific Northwest coast after mixing with some cold air from western Canada and is forecast to move along the California coast tomorrow before turning eastward and moving across the Desert Southwest on Tuesday. We’ll see a break in the light snowfall for Monday night and early Tuesday before light snow is again possible later Tuesday. Cooler temperatures will accompany the storm before the snow ends by Wednesday morning and temperatures start to warm by the afternoon, with another 1-4” possible for the morning report

A potent winter storm is then forecast to develop off the West Coast by midweek as a storm currently near the Aleutian Islands mixes with some very cold air from western Canada as it travels through the Gulf of Alaska on Tuesday. A ridge of high pressure is forecast to build over our area ahead of the storm which starts our warming later Wednesday and continues warm and dry weather until the end of the work week.

The storm off the West Coast is forecast to be forced inland on Friday by an even stronger and colder upstream storm, and will move over our area in some form for the weekend. Timing and strength are still up for debate, so stay tuned to my next regularly scheduled weather narrative on Thursday afternoon for more details on the weekend storm and snowfall guesses.

And for what its worth, that stronger and colder Aleutian storm is forecast to eventually move over our area during the following work week, and is currently looking quite promising with plenty of moisture and cold air.

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