POWDER ALERT: Maine And NH Will See Freshies All Week | Western Outlook Improves [Powderchasers]

POWDER ALERT: Maine And NH Will See Freshies All Week | Western Outlook Improves [Powderchasers]


POWDER ALERT: Maine And NH Will See Freshies All Week | Western Outlook Improves [Powderchasers]


Snow sets in off the coast of New England on 1/6/18 | Photo: NOAA

[Forecast Courtesy of Powderchasers]


Summary 1/3/18 | AM REPORT

Significant snowfall will be falling along the New England Coast with blizzard conditions, 18 foot seas and an opportunity to chase 5-10 inches in Maine and New Hampshire. The Western models are not in agreement for the Saturday/Sunday storm with my best guess of 4-8″ favoring western sections of Colorado including the northern San Juan’s, perhaps the Cottonwoods and the Tetons. Next week brings a chance for more significant snow for the Sierra and a wide area of Colorado favoring the 4 Corners that really need it! Arizona and New Mexico should finally see snow by the middle of next week.

Short Term Forecast:

Significant snowfall will be occurring Thursday in New England with 9-14″ (*drifting) in areas closest to the coast. If your chasing powder you will need to get in position tonight as tomorrow will make travel difficult to nearly impossible in some areas. The inland ski resorts such as Sunday River or Sugarloaf will see the highest amounts in the 5-10″ range. Depending on the track of the storm. These amounts may end up slightly lower or higher (5-8 is a sure bet with 7-12 not impossible). Areas such as Wildcat or North Conway will be “Wildcards” as 4-8″ is likely. Areas further west into Vermont should still see snowfall 3-6″ or more depending on how far west the storm tracks. Any variation to the track of a Nor Easter can make for significant differences in snowfall. I would not be surprised to see a foot or more at some eastern ski areas this weekend (MA and ME favored).

In the west, snow amounts for the Sierra have “Fizzled” for Thursday/Friday but still in play for the weekend. The GFS is taking the bullish route with 4-9″ likely for the Sierra (Southern areas of the lake or Mammoth Mountain favored) while the Euro is much less optimistic. My best guess without model consensus is 3-6″ for most locations primarily on Saturday. Areas to the south may be favored.

The Rockies grab snow Saturday PM/Sunday AM with significant discrepancies in the models. The highest snowfalls will most likely be found in The Tetons (4-8″), northern San Juans of Colorado (4-8″) and areas from Crested Butte through Aspen. The mountains further east may see less. Northwest flow kicks in behind the front mid day Sunday so areas along I-70 will try and catch up with a wide area of of 3-5″ found at most resorts in Summit, Eagle, Grand, and Routt Counties. Peak riding times will be Sunday morning for powder. Light snow may continue Sunday night into Monday. My best guess on Utah is 2-5″ in the Park City mountains with perhaps 4-7″ in the Cottonwoods near Alta. Even New Mexico as well as Wolf Creek get some action this weekend but amounts will be light.

The Good: Moderate now is likely in many areas this weekend in the west.

The Bad: Models are not providing good consensus on amounts.

This image depicts a plume from the University of Utah Atmospheric Sciences, which shows the wide discrepancies of model data for the summit of Jackson Hole Mountain Resort. The weekend is showing an average of around 10 inches with fairly good consensus of the outlying models (Tighter lines brings better consensus). I hesitate to share these ensemble plumes as they are often overdone. | Image: The University of Utah

Below is the same data points for Park City base area (Notice the wide discrepancies from 1-10 inches providing me less confidence on the average of 4-5 inches).

Here is one more plume for Red Mountain Pass in the San Juan’s of Colorado this weekend with an average of 10 inches (remember these plumes are often overdone).

The graph above clearly shows wide variability but it’s likely the San Juan’s grab moderate snowfall this weekend (Northern areas are favored).

Extended Forecast:

Some good news! A significant system may move into the Sierra by mid next week. That may take a southerly route over the 4 corners of Colorado/Arizona/New Mexico with some moisture shunting north into areas of central or northern Utah and most of Colorado. It’s too far out to gain confidence on exact track but confidence increasing on a decent low for midweek. New England grabs moderate or heavy snow (*blower) early next week favoring the northern ranges of the Green and White Mountains. This will be a chase worthy event early next week.

Below is an ensemble run for mid next week showing the deeper low forming off the California Coast.

– Powderchaser Steve

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