Potential for Snow Mid-week

Posted Sunday, January 31st, 2021 by Brittany Whitlam

TL;DR: Dry until mid-week as high pressure dominates the pattern. Another storm is possible on Wednesday, but its intensity is currently unknown. 

Nowcast: It’s another beautiful day in the Wasatch. Temps reached the mid-to-high 30s today at resort bases and high 20s in the upper elevations. Winds are currently light out of the SSE, with gusts in the mid 20s at mountain peaks and ridges. Skies are mostly clear, making for an awesome bluebird day.

Beautiful sunny day in the Wasatch. Courtesy of Alta Ski Area: alta.com/weather

Short term: Conditions are dry and mild today as the ridge axis has settled over the Intermountain West. Ridging will persist through mid-week ahead of another shortwave expected to dig in off the west coast on Wednesday. 

Long term: As of today’s 12z model runs, the GFS and EC ensembles are not in agreement for our next potential storm. Both models are suggesting the trough to split off the California coast on Tuesday afternoon. However, the GEFS suggests that the split trough will rejoin with the main trough as it moves inland. This solution would give us the best chance for another strong storm that could produce up to a foot for the Wasatch.

Wednesday’s trough from the GEFS run. Courtesy of Pivotal Weather: pivotalweather.com

However, the Euro ensemble says otherwise. It suggests that the split will produce a cut-off low that will remain off the coast of the Baja Peninsula. In turn, the trough would brush by to our north and bring a less intense storm.

Wednesday’s trough from the Euro ensemble run. Courtesy of Pivotal Weather: pivotalweather.com

Bottom line, snow is likely mid-week. Confidence is too low at this time to nail down a specific amount. Stay tuned this week to see how this potential storm progresses.

Brittany Whitlam

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