As the above image shows, this first day of Spring has not been very spring like for many. We can’t remember the last time so many of the nation’s skiable mountain ranges were lit up with Winter Weather Warnings and Advisories at the same time. Apparently, this last “Winter” storm has decided to take its time moving through and linger spreading snow far and wide. Winter clearly isn’t going away without putting up a fight. And we skiers and riders couldn’t be more thrilled. For a change, we’re happy to report that it’s not just the Pacific NW Cascades (up to 2 more ft forecast by Fri.) but also the Rockies that are going to get dumped on: up to 10″ for Wasatch by Fri. with lots more just in time for the weekend for UT and CO. Looks like spring breakers will have a lot of good options for snow. For those interested in this stuff, the National Weather Service’s Prediction Center released their “heavy snow and icing discussion” today as follows. Happy spring everyone!
Valid 00z thu mar 21 2013 – 00z sun mar 24 2013… cold front has already moved ashore the Pac NW…which has resulted in rapidly falling snow levels and given the continued post-frontal moist upslope flow and increased mid level instability…Mod-hvy snowfall is expected during day 1 across the WA/OR Cascades into the Blue Mtn of NE OR… Then spreading E-SE across the Salmon River/Sawtooth/Bitterroot Ranges as well as the Wasatch Range and N and Central Rockies. Meanwhile, snow levels in the Pacific NW are expected to lower ~500 ft…bringing the possibility of accumulating snows to near sea level. The highest probabilities for substantial accumulations during day 1 (greater than a foot) will remain across the Cen/Nrn WA Cascades.
By day 3 (Fri night into Sat)…the sharpening longwave trough across the Cen/Srn rockies will induce a developing lee side sfc circulation over the Srn front ranges and eventually into the Srn Plains…strengthening Barrier jet to bring heavy snowfall to the front ranges of CO. Probabilities for 24 hr amounts exceeding one foot are in the low-mod category (10 to <70 percent) over this region during day 3…including Den/Bou and cos…which is fairly significant for a Day 3 forecast.