Significant snowfall has fallen over the Sierra (Mammoth is reporting 2-3 feet) with 9-15 inches at most northern resorts. Snow will increase over most of southern Utah today through tonight where the San Juans of AZ, CO, NM will be deep for XMAS! The Wasatch in northern Utah does best tonight and Sunday however some surprises may exist today in the Logan,Park City, or northern Wasatch range.
Heavy snow will be cranking out impressive snow totals in the mountains of Nevada (Near Las Vegas), Southern Utah, northern Arizona today and tonight. You won’t go wrong with a chase there today (storm ski). That action moves over Colorado XMAS eve so look for 1st chair deepness in many spots like Wolf Creek, Purgatory, Taos, Telluride (Wildcard), and perhaps Crested Butte (Wildcard).
UTAH: Moderate snow will be falling over much of northern Utah, central Idaho today. “Winds are producing lots of uncertainty for heavy snowfall with S, SE, SW and eventually West-Northwest for northern Utah.” These patterns can produce higher snow totals in spots like Big Cottonwood Canyon (4 inches last night) versus Little Cottonwood (Alta-Snowbird). Sundance is another mountain to keep watching with southerly flow. The Uinta mountain range near Park City should fare well as perhaps spots near Snowbasin (Like SW flow). The models show a decent fetch of moisture in the Logan Valley so keep an eye out for Beaver Mountain who could get deep by noon. “This is one of those storms where you need to keep an eye on snow cams as surprises and disappointments are a sure bet here” “Currently I am going to make last minute chase decisions”. I suspect that the normal recipients of big dumps might end up short today where the others deliver surprises (Park City, Snowbasin, Sundance, Beaver, BCC versus LCC). Sunday has better reliability for heavy snowfall for most of northern Utah.
Snowfall through Monday
Action increases significantly this evening over the San Juan range of Colorado. Overnight snow of 9-12 inches will be waiting for you at many southern resorts in Colorado for Xmas (First chair). Northern New Mexico resorts should grab slightly less but could fare decent totals. Moderate to heavy snow is possible for northern Utah as the winds shift to the west and northwest. Utah is on the short list with perhaps 12-15 inches at upper elevations of many northern ski areas. (Includes LCC, BCC, and spots north). First chair in many spots of northern Utah will deliver on XMAS day!
Colorado’s central mountains fare decent 4-8 inches (Crested Butte) with less snow along and north of I-70 (3-5). The Tetons grab teasing 1-3 inches each day into Sunday with a stronger system mid week. I think if I were chasing powder in Colorado I would stick to the 4 corners region including Wolf Creek, Purgatory, Silverton and perhaps Crested Butte (Telluride is a wildcard).
Snow showers will persist in northern Utah and most of Colorado through Monday morning (I-70 corridor). It’s possible that 1st chair on Monday will deliver lighter density fluff on top of the denser snow that fell on Sunday for northern Utah and perhaps some isolated areas of Colorado along I-70.
The extended forecast looks very promising for the Cascades and British Columbia by Tuesday next week! That system may produce a moderate event for most of Idaho, Wyoming, and Montana by Wednesday!