What a ski season it has been! With recent big improvements across the Northeast and a winter to remember out West, we'll glide through late January with new snow in the forecast and plenty of good options to hit the slopes.
In this week's SnoCast, It's all about a trough digging in across the U.S. which will bring both new snow and a surge of biting cold air by next week for many. Make sure you have the layers ready to roll out. Here's the breakdown for January 26 through February 1, 2023.
We've made incredible improvements across the Northeast this week as a series of three storms added much needed snow to the trails. Natural snow cover across the Northeast has grown from just 48% to nearly 100% coverage since January 1.
In the forecast, lingering scattered snow showers (lake effect and upslope) remain across the Northeast and Great Lakes Thursday as the most recent storm departs. An additional dusting-3" can be expected through Thursday at peaks from Wisconsin to Maine, and down the spine of the Appalachians to West Virginia.
A much weaker, quick moving clipper system scoots across the Great Lakes Friday, delivering another a 1-3" from Minnesota to Wisconsin. This system skims by New York and Vermont peaks Friday night-Saturday with a light coating possible.
The next system takes shape over the weekend, spreading a thin swath of snow from the lower Great Lakes region to New England. Expect another 2-6" of snow to fall by Monday from southern Michigan to New York's Adirondacks and northern New England. Areas farther south will likely see rain.
This system opens the freezer door for the Midwest especially, with biting cold winter air settling in next week.
Yet another system takes shape around Wednesday next week. Keep an eye on the forecast for this one, since it's still pretty far out in time.
As of Thursday, scattered snow showers continue to pepper the Rockies northward to the Western Canadian slopes. A trough will dig in over the next several days, reinforcing snow (for some, a lot of it!) and also causing cold air to dive southward through the weekend.
Friday, the heaviest snow will focus across the Pacific Northwest Cascades, and the far northern Rockies from Alberta to Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, and Colorado with a widespread 6-12" for most bases and mid-mountains. Snow persists Saturday for the northern Rockies which allows a total of 1-3 feet to pile up at the higher peaks through the weekend. Watch around Jackson Hole, Grand Targhee, Big Sky, and Bridger Bowl and others nearby for big totals.
Here are the National Weather Service snow forecast maps state by state for the northern Rockies.
By Sunday and Monday, the snow slips southward, delivering freshies to the southwest and southern Rockies. In California, enough cold air likely lets snow slip all the way to the far southern peaks, including Big Bear and Snow Valley. While totals may adjust with time, it looks as though a general 4-8" can be expected. But, if enough moisture can hang on, there is potential for 10" or more for some of the peaks from California to Utah and Colorado.
Much of the country will be colder than average through early February, with temps as much as 20-30 below average for the coldest core over the Midwest and northern Rockies. Get the layers ready for next week! Here's the temperature and precipitation outlook for Jan. 31-Feb. 4.
We'll see ya next Thursday with another SnoCast! -Meteorologist Kerrin Jeromin
The West finally settles down after an extremely active stretch, while the East prepares for three storms this upcoming week. Here's the forecast scoop in this week's SnoCast.
On Thursday, a storm continues to lift northeastward through the Great Lakes, delivering blustery winds and a healthy 6-12" of snow for parts of northern Michigan and Wisconsin. Great news for Midwest ski areas around Granite Peak, Whitecap, Shanty Creek, and Big Powderhorn.
This same system shifts to the Northeast later Thursday-Friday, delivering much-need 5-10"+ of snow for northern New England ski areas, with highest amounts in northern Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine. Look to Jay Peak, Burke Mountain, Loon, Sunday River and others nearby.
Unfortunately, warmer air sneaks in from the south generating a wintry mix parts of the Catskills, Poconos, and Berkshires with slick travel expected.
Colder air returns for all through Friday with light upslope snow lingering across the northern Appalachians, which will be followed up by a beautiful weekend for skiing and riding. Get out and love it!
A second system will track up the Appalachians to interior New England Sunday through Monday (1/22-23). This time, the rain/snow line threatens to bisect New England from southwest to northeast, so most likely areas to see snow remain across northern Pennsylvania , New York, Vermont and perhaps northern New Hampshire. Keep monitoring as the rain/snow line will shift based on the exact storm track.
A brief lull Tuesday, before yet another storm targets the Northeast by mid-next week with another good chance of snow for the north. A bit too far out to talk amounts, but at this point, any snow is good snow.
After an unbelievably active stretch, the West finally appears to have a break in view. With nearly a dozen separate storms since late December, California and Utah have had huge totals, now topping some 300-400" on the season (in some cases more, including Alta at 426" and Brighton at 412"!). Excellent news for the snowpack and water resupply out West.
UPDATED snow total map for California for a period of 22 days stretching from December 26 to January 17. The gridded analysis estimates from https://t.co/nZVgNpDgTP and some observations indicate upwards of 15 FEET of snow fell in the highest elevations of the Sierra Nevada. pic.twitter.com/cuQjWAEM58— NWS Weather Prediction Center (@NWSWPC) January 19, 2023
On Thursday, a cold front continues to sag across southern California toward the Southwest U.S. with snow drifting over the four-corners states by Friday. Expect a general 2-6" of snow for the Arizona, southern Colorado, and New Mexico mountains to round out the week.
Most of Saturday looks pleasant to hit the slopes, albeit breezy over the Rockies.
A system drops in from western Canada and the northern U.S. Rockies by Saturday night-Sunday with potential for 5-10" in the Washington Cascades, and a fresh 2-6" for Oregon and Idaho before slowly drifting down the northern Rockies by Monday.
This will open to the door and allow much colder air to spill in for much of the West next week.
Check in again each Thursday for a new SnoCast. Until then, happy skiing and riding!
Each week, we're diving into the forecast nationwide with meteorologist Kerrin Jeromin to find the snow and bluebird skies. Here's what's on tap for January 12-17, with a peek ahead at the pattern through the end of January.
In this week's SnoCast, let’s start in the East where it’s looking a bit more like winter than, say, a month ago. A storm is lifting northeastward from the Ohio River Valley to New England Thursday and Friday, delivering both wintry weather and rain.
Expect a quick shot of snow, ranging from 2-5" (locally more) over New England and Maine Thursday before a warmer, wetter change takes over later by night. Unfortunately, this snow will compact and some will melt off with the rain by Friday. Not to worry, though, because once the storm pulls away, colder air and lingering upslope snow returns over the weekend.
Through Friday, the storm lifts away from New England dragging in colder air from the northwest allowing a few final flakes in New England in New York. But, more notably for the southeast, with colder air and a brisk northwest wind, upslope snow (or snow forced by wind bumping up and over the mountains) develops Friday and Friday night over the southern Appalachians from North Carolina to West Virginia with several inches of new snow through early Saturday.
Here's the snow forecast through early Sunday (Jan. 15) for the East, keeping in mind most of New England's snow occurs before the rain changeover Thursday to early Friday.
Overall, a quiet and pleasant weekend lies ahead for much of the East to hit the slopes. Nighttime temps will be cold enough to allow for snowmaking, with a milder trend beginning again early next week.
Since late December, the West has been hammered with storm after storm. Some peaks in California have now surpassed their typical annual snow amounts (300"+), and its only mid January! The stormy pattern will continue for another week or so before finally calming down late month.
Expect another 2-4 feet of snow (locally more at the highest peaks) Friday into Saturday (Jan. 13-14) for the Sierras, and lighter snow with high snow levels up the Cascades as the next storm begins to dig in across the West.
This storm continues to dig in Sunday-Monday, with reinforcing systems keeping periodic snow going across the mountain West through mid next week. In total, expect another 1-2 feet of snow for Utah and Colorado, 6-12" for New Mexico and Arizona as well as the northern Rockies through mid next week.
A notable change lies ahead for the West in the extended 1-2 week outlook. After a stormy month, the West finally begins to trend drier, allowing a break from the storm parade. Meanwhile, the East still keeps an overall warmer than average pattern, with short windows of cold and snow opportunity within the next 1-2 weeks.
It's a new year, but the same story continues across the West as atmospheric rivers yield feet of more snow and create blizzard-like conditions!
Western U.S. & Canada
Bomb cyclone. Atmospheric river. You’ve heard the terms before and these significant weather events kick off our first SnoCast of 2023. A storm (that has already “bombed” out over the Pacific Ocean) will be ongoing in California’s Sierra Nevada Thursday. Strong winds up to 100 miles per hour, along with snow rates of 3"/hr, will continue through Friday morning. In total, 1-2 feet of snow will be likely above 5,000 feet elevation and 2-3 feet above 6,500’. Road closures and the halting of lift operations will be likely, so be patient when going to ski and ride this snow!
The aforementioned California storm will scoot across Utah, Colorado, and Wyoming Friday dropping 3-6” of snow. Then this weekend, another coastal California storm will arrive and bring another 1-3 feet to the central and northern Sierra Nevada. Many of these weather systems will impact Cali-Nevada, with lighter snow falling in surrounding areas.
The incoming West snow will fall atop amounts up to 40-50" in the past week in California, and on 40-70" across the Rockies. Always check the avalanche forecast and exercise extreme caution!
Eastern U.S. & Canada
Recent snow will end Thursday in the Upper Midwest, with totals from this event ranging between 4-8". A couple of weather systems bear watching across the East, one on Thursday-Friday and another on Saturday night. Both of these, as of this writing, will be lighter winter storms with 1-4 inches of snow possible through each event.
However, there’s a small potential for each of these to get a little stronger and gather more moisture to drop a few more inches than just “freshies.” Nonetheless, Maine will get 1-4” of snow Thursday-Friday, while the mid-Atlantic could get a swipe of that 1-3” Saturday night. Otherwise temperatures will continue to stay mild, trending colder on Tuesday.
Read our holiday SnoCast next week as we highlight the snow you can expect for the Martin Luther King Jr. weekend! Until then, happy skiing and riding!
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