Showing posts from March, 2012

Storm Door Opened Too Wide For This, Stormy Week Ahead

First let me apologize for my absence. The day job keeps getting in the way. You may notice no advertisement on this website ... there will never be any. Therefore, unfortunately, I have to find gainful employment elsewhere. If there was going to be a major dump this weekend, I would have been on it. As it is, the storm door opened just too wide. That allowed the storm to dig south down the coast and go right past us. Recall that the blocking ridge of high pressure, which was responsible for our dry fall and early winter, needs to be in just the right place. What has happened this weekend, is the ridge has moved too far south and west. However, the good news is that Southern California will get some much needed rain. I believe by end of day Monday, the Carson Range should get another 3-5 inches of snow.

Take a look. The first picture is our current conditions. Notice how far west and south the ridge of high pressure is. With no blocking, the storms can move straight down the coast. Th…

Large Storm Knocking on the Door

Short Term
This next wave looks like a direct hit. Here is the forecast for early tomorrow morning from the EC weather model:

There will be periods of 3 inches (or more) an hour snowfall. The storm will spill over into the leeward valleys in the form of rain.

With this storm comes some very cold air which will settle in for the next couple of days along with additional snow showers and additional snow accumulations in the mountains.

The difference in snow amounts between the Carson Range and Sierra have been amazing this week. The Sierra on the west side of Tahoe has picked up a whopping 3-4 times the snowfall. The difference in the approaching storm will not be so stark. In fact look for a major blizzard late tonight and tomorrow in the Carson range with very heavy snow and high winds.

I expect the Carson range to come in at between 2-5 feet and the Sierra with slightly more, around 3-6 feet in the next 3 days. The high Sierra south and west of Tahoe will have places that pick up 7 f…

Storms Update

Overall Discussion
Our two storms are quickly turning into the three storms. One is poised to come into our area tonight, then another late Thursday and another early Saturday. Tonight's storm will last well into tomorrow and we will get a very short break prior to the Thursday night event. Here is a look at the updated precip totals through Friday, this does not include Saturday's event which may be the biggest of them all:

This forecast by the NAM weather model has some areas of the western Sierra picking up 10+ inches of liquid precip. This truly is a gigantic event for this time of year. All the mountain areas should pick up a minimum of 3-6 inches with the Carson Range probably hovering around the 4 inch mark by end of day Friday. These storms will start cold and then tap into sub tropical moisture which will raise snow levels from 5,500 feet to near 8,000 feet. Again, this is very difficult to predict and the NWS has been all over the board on this.

Carson Range Tonight

2 Large Storms Poised To Hit

We have been discussing this for a few weeks now. Currently we are in between systems, but that will change starting tonight for the Western Sierra.

Storm One Tuesday night through Wednesday
The first big system will bring heavy snow to the Tahoe area. The snow levels can be variable but the local NWS is talking about 7,000 feet. This moisture is coming from the sub-tropics which means two things. 1. Lots of it. 2. Less predictable snow levels. Here is a look at the EC forecast for late Tuesday into early Wednesday:

There is a large moisture tap for this wave and the Sierra will see copious amounts of snow. Most of the precip for the Carson range will fall on Wednesday, but there should be a large band of snow to dump between 12 and 18 inches ... or maybe more, at Mt. Rose Tuesday and Wednesday.

Storm Two Friday/Saturday/Sunday
The exact timing of this event is still up in the air. It looks like it will start Friday afternoon and wind up early Sunday morning. This storm is the larger of…

Ready or Not, Here it Comes

We have been talking for about 3 weeks or more that conditions are becoming favorable for a change to a prolonged stormy period. Well here it comes. Let's not mess around. This first image is the total liquid precip forecast by the EC weather model for the next 10 days:

Many areas around Lake Tahoe are forecast for better than 5 inches of precip. There could be more. There is a ton of moisture to work with as MJO does its thing. The determining factor is how big will the storms be that drop out of the Gulf of AK?

This next chart is almost a carbon copy of last year at this time. It is also a Tahoe skiers dream. Our ridge of high pressure has been well west, while another ridge has setup west of Hudson Bay. That creates a storm corridor directly into Northern California.

This should produce a series of storms that should come one after another. The party starts Tuesday night when the snows begin. This pattern has the potential to go 2 weeks or more as the long range models are show…

Spring Coming To an Abrupt Halt

Short Term
If you enjoyed the last couple of days, then you will enjoy tomorrow as temps will climb close to 70 in Reno and Carson City. Tomorrow night will bring in a fast moving very cold front. With it will come all the winds and at least some snow for the Sierra. Precip with this front may start as rain below 8,500 feet but will quickly change over as the front approaches. This storm is moving fast but we can expect 2-6 inches for the Carson Range and possibly a bit more.

Tuesday and Wednesday will see high temps barely make it out of the 40's in the leeward valley and not crack the freezing mark in the Sierra. Another warm ridge of high pressure will move in for Thursday. A possibility of another system comes in for the weekend, but the models have that moving just north.

Long Term
Okay, I have been talking about conditions being ripe for winter weather. I believe the storm that I discussed in my last post, for the 12th will come into our area and give the Sierra a decent stor…

What's Next?

Ok, that was a great week for winter as all of the Sierra around Tahoe was blanketed with at least 4 feet of snow and some areas as much as 8 feet! Coverage out there is much better, but what's next?

If you believe the NWS, nothing. Not for a couple of weeks. However, sometimes they make their calls based solely on weather models. They were caught with their pants down this week as were the weather models. The EC weather model is predicting a couple of good storms in the next 10 days or so, starting with next Tuesday/Wednesday. However GFS has everything staying well to our north.

Here is a look at a storm with ample moisture that is being forecast by the EC weather model. The EC was closest to this past weeks surprise:

MJO has settled into phase 3. What the heck does that mean? That means that it is in a very good position to have a very moist impact on our weather. The models have certainly not picked up on this, however some of the long range predictors have. In any event, this…