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Steamboat Springs area weather forecast from Wednesday

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Thursday will be relatively warm and sunny after another cool night tonight before another wave rotating around the just passed storm may bring some cooler temperatures to the area for later Friday into early Saturday, though at this point it is uncertain whether this airmass will make it over the Continental Divide.

Otherwise, most of Saturday should be nice until yet another wave rotating around the longitudinally expanding old storm north of the Great Lakes mixes with some Pacific energy and brings the threat of some afternoon showers.

Meanwhile, a Pacific storm is forecast to cross the Pacific Northwest coast late Saturday and drop into the Great Basin by Sunday. Transient ridging ahead of the storm should bring a warm and breezy day for Sunday before complicated interactions are forecast to occur between the Great Basin storm, additional upstream Pacific energy and additional energy still rotating around the old storm that affected us this past weekend.

While the details will no doubt evolve as we get closer to the event, indeed they have already changed from yesterday, another round of cool and unsettled weather with periods of precipitation look to be on tap for the beginning of next week.

Steamboat Springs area weather forecast from Tuesday

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

After a seasonably cool night tonight, a wave rotating down the west side of the past storm, currently located in North Dakota, is forecast to rotate through northern Colorado on Wednesday and reinforce the current cool spring airmass, bringing breezy conditions over our area with a chance of afternoon showers.

After another cool night Wednesday, Thursday will be warm and mostly sunny before another wave rotating around the same storm may bring some cooler temperatures to the area for later Friday into early Saturday, though at this point it is uncertain whether this airmass will make it over the Continental Divide.

Otherwise, most of Saturday should be nice until yet another wave rotating around the longitudinally expanding old storm mixes with some Pacific energy and brings the threat of some afternoon showers.

Meanwhile, a Pacific storm is forecast to cross the Pacific Northwest coast late Saturday and drop into the Great Basin by Sunday. Transient ridging ahead of the storm should bring a warm and breezy day for Sunday before complicated interactions are forecast to occur between the Great Basin storm, additional upstream Pacific energy and additional energy still rotating around the old storm that affected us this past weekend.

While the details will no doubt evolve as we get closer to the event, another round of cool and unsettled weather with periods of precipitation look to be on tap for most of the next work week.

Steamboat Springs area weather forecast from Monday

Monday, May 9, 2016

After about 15” of snow over the last few days fell on top of Mount Werner, one last colder storm from the Pacific Northwest, currently in Idaho, will affect our area with precipitation tonight and cooler temperatures Tuesday and Wednesday before spring returns by Thursday.

A band of moderate to heavy showers look to cross the area around mid-evening in the unstable air ahead of the front. Showers may decrease for a brief time before quickly becoming strong again with the frontal passage around midnight, which is about twelve hours faster than the last few forecasts. We’ll likely see another 2-5” of snow on the hill, with some snow accumulating on the grassy surfaces of the valleys along with breezy westerly winds.

Models are now consistent (the NAM model has joined the more consistent AVN) in keeping most of the precipitation to our south and north on Tuesday, leaving our area mostly precipitation free in cool springtime temperatures, except for the possibility of the obligatory afternoon showers.

A trailing wave is forecast to rotate through northern Colorado on Wednesday, keeping cool temperatures and breezy conditions over our area with a chance of afternoon showers.

Thursday still looks warm and mostly sunny before some cool and dry air to our east from the Canadian Plains may bring some cooler temperatures to the area for Friday, though at this point it is uncertain whether this airmass will make it over the Continental Divide. Saturday may remain pleasant before more cool air from the Canadian Plans and an incoming Pacific storm combine to possibly threaten our weather late in the weekend.

Steamboat Springs area weather forecast from Sunday

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Since the snow stake was cleared early this afternoon on the top of Sunshine Peak, where an inch of snow had fallen on top of yesterday’s 4”, about 5” of additional snow has fallen near the top of Mount Werner as shown by the Steamboat Powdercam, with 1”/hour snowfall rates over the last couple of hours.

Snow levels have dropped to near 7500′ this evening, and continued snow showers above that level and rain or mixed rain and snow showers below that level will continue overnight. There may be another 2-5” overnight on the hill as a short range model has periods of sometimes moderate showers continuing.

By Monday, the storm that has affected us since Friday will be east of our area, though we will still be susceptible to showers during the first half of the day as energy rotates around the backside of the low.

A colder storm from the Pacific Northwest is forecast to quickly follow this storm after a brief break during Monday evening into Tuesday morning. This will bring a moderately strong cold front through the area around midday Tuesday, with the possibility of some snow down to the valley bottoms by Tuesday night.

Previous forecasts had moisture quickly eroding behind the front, but now there is disagreement among the models, leading to uncertainty with respect to the duration of the precipitation. I’m inclined to side with the numerical guidance that has more energy upstream, bringing around 3-6” of snow on the mountain by Wednesday morning and likely allowing for accumulating snowfall on the grassy surfaces of the valleys.

Going with the slower solution also keeps showers around the area for Wednesday, delaying the drying until the evening. But Thursday and Friday still look warm and mostly sunny before some cool air from the Canadian Plains and incoming Pacific energy combine to possibly threaten our weather late in the weekend.

Steamboat Springs area weather forecast from Saturday

Saturday, May 7, 2016

The expansive Great Basin storm has currently elongated to the northeast and southwest, extending from southern California to northeastern Colorado. The slot of dry air indicated in yesterday’s forecast did move over our area before sunrise, but moved just far enough east to give way to the observed thunderstorms with hail this morning. As of this afternoon, about 4” of snow has fallen near the top of Mount Werner as shown by the Steamboat Powdercam.

The forecast has a band of showers either over our area or just north of our area overnight into tomorrow morning. While we just missed some sun this morning, there is a small chance that we may be just south of the precipitation early in the day, possibly allowing for some sun for Mother’s Day morning. Showers will reform or continue in the unsettled weather for the afternoon, with snows continuing on the hill for another 2-5” above 9000′ or so between this afternoon and Sunday afternoon.

By Monday, the storm will be east of us, though we will still be susceptible to showers during the day as energy rotates around the backside of the low.

A colder storm from the Pacific Northwest is forecast to quickly follow this storm after a brief break during Monday night into Tuesday morning. This will bring a moderately strong cold front through the area around midday Tuesday, with the possibility of some snowflakes down to the valley bottoms by Tuesday evening. However, moisture is sparse and quickly erodes behind the front, precluding accumulations on the valley floors and limiting snows on the hill. Furthermore, the NAM model has a bit of a split in the storm which keeps most of the precipitation north and south of our area, though the AVN and some global models keep the storm more intact with more precipitation over our area.

Nonetheless, the quick clearing behind the storm should bring a cool but mostly sunny Wednesday followed by warming and at least a dry Thursday to close out the work week.

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