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Sunday, April 16, 2017

3 Weak, Moisture Starved Systems Heading Our Way

We have 3 systems that will move quickly through and have a slight impact on the area. I do not see any major snowfall amounts in any one given time period, however the total of all 3 systems will leave us with more snow in the Carson Range and Sierra.

Let's focus on the total precip and snow levels. Mt. Rose will receive all snow. For the most part snow levels will be around 6,500-7,000 feet. However, the 2nd system could bring in some warmer air and snow levels could jump to 7,500 feet late tomorrow or early Tuesday.

Here is the precip forecast:

Some areas of the High Sierra, around the western crest could see as much as 3 additional feet. Those areas, above 9,000 feet have picked up so much snow this season, that 3 feet is like a few inches anywhere else. It is interesting that Mt. Rose has led North America in snowfall amounts, because the highest peaks, west of Lake Tahoe at the crest of the Sierra have picked up much more snow, perhaps some areas in the 1,000 inch range ... uninhabitable!

I do see 9-18 inches of additional snowfall for Mt. Rose by late next Wednesday.

After that, high pressure begins to dominate and we will see a fairly significant warming trend. How significant? There is a chance of 80 degrees for the leeward valleys, next Saturday.

Stay Tuned ...

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Next Storm Coming Late on Wednesday

We are tracking 3 storms right now for next Wednesday, then a week from today and then, perhaps, the 21st of April. The last storm hooked up nicely with a moisture tap and we see something similar for the storm next week, although probably not as much moisture by about half.

Here is the forecast for late Wednesday night:

A decent moisture connection, but nothing like what we saw in the last storm. Snow levels for this one should be around 6,500 at the start and fall to around 5,000 feet as the cold front passes through. That means the leeward foothills can expect more snow on the ground.

The following Sunday night see's the next storm come in. This storm does not have the moisture associated with it and will only bring in more cool air. I see light amounts of snow and lot of wind. Here is the forecast for Sunday afternoon as the storm approaches:

The last storm we are tracking could show up on the 21st and may bring a return to the moisture tap, we will have to wait and see.

Here is the moisture forecast for the next two systems, as you can see nothing like this last system:

I am thinking 9-18 inches of snow for Mt. Rose by Friday morning with an additional 2-6 on Sunday night.

Stay Tuned ...

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Storm Track Shifts North, Storms Stacking Up

The storm track for our latest weather system has shifted north and Tahoe is now right in the bullseye of the storm. This is a major storm for this time of year and will last through most of Saturday with high winds and lots of precip, mostly snow above 7,000 and perhaps lower.

Most of the major precip should be over by late Saturday afternoon. However, we are talking about a lot of rain and mountain snow between now and then. The possibility exists for a major snow event for the leeward foothills around 5,500 feet and above as the NWS is having difficulty pinpointing snow levels with this very unusual storm. If you live in one of those areas, be prepared.

The next storm we are tracking comes in next Wednesday, April 12th. This looks like an abnormally large spring storm again:

This storm has adequate moisture and will come in warm we believe right now. Our best guess is 7,500 feet. This system will stick around until late Friday afternoon.

We are tracking another abnormally large spring storm that could come in around Tuesday the 18th. It appears to be following in the footsteps of the first two storms. Speaking of the first two storms, here is the precip forecast:

Folks, there is a good chance that Mt. Rose could pick up an additional 3-7 feet of snow in the next week with what appears to be more on the way.

Nice to have Paul Huntington back, his crystal ball seems to see just a little further out than others! If you have not read his post from last column, you should.

Stay Tuned ...

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Time for the Something Decent; Huntington see's Wet April

If you read the last post, we are now approaching what we termed a decent storm. Here are the details:

  • Approaching storm will mean above average temps tomorrow as storm's counter clockwise rotation brings in sub-tropical air.
  • Thursday starts out warm, but as storm approaches, temperatures begin to drop and winds begin to increase, especially Thursday afternoon.
  • Very early Friday approaching storm reaches Sierra and has a very adequate moisture tap.
  • Moisture should be moderate to heavy through Saturday as this storm is moving much slower than the last series of storms.
  • Storm could produce as much as 10 inches of liquid precip at the Sierra Crest South around Mammoth and up to 5 inches in the Carson Range. That classifies this as a very strong spring storm.
Here is a look at the GFS forecast for late Friday night as the storm peaks around then:

Here is a look at the total precip. Some areas of the Central Sierra could pick up 10+ inches of liquid precip, which would make this not only a strong spring storm, but a record breaker:

Snow levels will start very high, but I believe in the Carson Range we will see all snow at 8,000 feet. Snow levels will fall during the event as well and will reach 6,000 feet by the end.

The leeward valley's could see an inch of rain, the foothills could see 2-3 inches of rain and snow mixture.

Paul Huntington, who lives in an undisclosed location in Central California is starting to recover from record flooding and is back, at least temporarily, online. He filed this report:

Getting back on track and road repairs are ongoing from debris flows and slides but I am back to normalcy- almost! I found a really good precip graphic on the California Nevada River Forecast Centers site and is the best I have seen and I like how it only goes out 6 days so its fairly accurate! I have attached it for you and it might be a good one to start using on your week out forecasting. Mid to late April is looking very wet and stormy and im hypothesizing that the Peruvian "Coastal El Nino" or "El Nino-E" (E stands for East Pacific, whereas El Nino-C are more central like the 2015-2016 Winter) is playing a role in this abnormally wet pattern we are about to enter. This warming and thunderstorm activity (low pressure) in the East equatorial pacific is partly responsible for the low latitude jet stream indicative of positive Pacific North America Pattern. When the jet takes this path the Arctic Oscillation just has to lean toward negative values and wet moisture rich low pressures will find a comfortable pathway across California. Its a bit concerning to me flood wise and even Oroville dams integrity could be threatened again if what im seeing plays out into late April!

Stay Tuned ...

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

2 Moisture Starved Storms, Then Maybe Something Decent

We have a few fast moving, moisture starved storms heading our way. The first hits very early Thursday morning. It would classify it as a slider, but it is dropping in straight from the north. To our west High Pressure is dominating and blocking any reasonable moisture tap for this storm.

The next storm comes in very late on Sunday night and follows a similar pattern:

This one is trying to weasel a bit more moisture around the blocking ridge of high pressure. I see at best just a few inches of snow above 6,500 feet for both of these storms in the Carson Range and about the same or slightly more in the Sierra.

As the ridge of high pressure begins to break down, we are tracking what might be a bit more of a winter event which should begin to approach our area about a week from tomorrow. If this storm decides to slow down and take its time, unlike the last several storms, we could be measuring precip in feet rather than inches:

It is still way too early to make the call, but here is what ECMWF thinks of total precip for the next 3 storms:

Most of this precip comes with the third storm, which is still over a week away. We will keep an eye on things and report accordingly.

Stay Tuned ...

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Two More Storms to Hit Tahoe Between Now and Tuesday

The first in a series of the 3 storms is just about past us. We will have a very short reprieve until the next storm arrives. That storm is scheduled to show up late Friday afternoon. It is a quick moving storm and will be out of here in less than 24 hours.

Then we will have another short reprieve ahead of a slightly bigger storm scheduled to come in very early on Monday morning. Again, this storm will not stick around for long and will be long gone within 24 hours.

Here is a look at the forecast for Friday @ noon, just ahead of the storm:

Pretty impressive as it makes its way inland. However, the storm will break-up somewhat. It is also moving pretty fast. Snow levels appear to be around 6,500 -7,000 feet for this event.

The next storm begins to move in very late Sunday night:

This appears to be a slightly colder storm with snow levels forecast to be around 6,500 feet. It too is moving fast and will not hold together well as it makes its way to Tahoe.

After this storm clears out, we will have a warming and clearing trend that should last into the following weekend.

Here is a look at the precip forecast:

Along the crest at the highest elevations, we may see an additional 18-24 inches of snow. The Carson Range will be shadowed somewhat and we expect perhaps another 6-12 inches by Monday evening.

Stay Tuned ...

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Stormy Week Starts Late Tomorrow Night

A series of moderate storms are headed our way. The first is knocking on the door. It is going to take about 24 hours for this storm to get organized, then it will tap into some moisture and begin what should be a fairly stormy week. The synopsis is: Storm Monday through Tuesday, break Wednesday through Thursday, then another storm for Friday into Saturday.

Here is the first of the storms as it gets cranking around noon on Tuesday:

Again, we see some shadowing for the Sierra and we are right on the edge of the cold and warm air. I believe this will be all snow above 7,500 feet.

After a break for Wednesday and most of Thursday, the next storm arrives late Thursday night. Here is a look at the forecast as the storm approaches Thursday afternoon:

This storm is packing cool air and tapping into very warm sub-tropical air which is always challenging to forecast snow levels. As we get closer we can pinpoint where the rain snow line will occur. Right now my guess is around 8,000 feet.

The precip totals are pretty impressive for this time of year:

I am guessing 18-36 inches of fresh snow by next Saturday for the Carson Range and Mt. Rose Ski area. Along the crest, above 8,000 feet, you can double that.

Looking further ahead, another set of storms is headed our way and it looks to be a stormy weather track through the end of the month.. Let's see how the models deal with these next storms, next week.

Stay Tuned ..