Showing posts from 2019

Winter 2019-2020 Outlook

Long time no post. I hope everybody had an enjoyable summer! Despite our very snowy beginning to 2019, the precip tapered off in the spring and especially in the summer. The tinder was not quite as plentiful and we also were very lucky to have a reduced fire season.

We have several very cold storms headed our way over the next several days, which will produce some precip for Northern California, that should continue to dampen the fires that are currently burning.

We will also see off and on snow ranging from 6,000-8,000 feet in both the Sierra and Carson Ranges. However, temperatures will eventually warm up and most of that snow will melt.

If anything looks serious, we will post, but for now, fairly typical September weather.

2019/2010 Winter Outlook
With El Nino all but a forgotten memory, we have moved into a neutral ENSO. We have seen how El Nino and his sister La Nina can have a very profound effect on our weather. However, with El Nino gone we will need some other anomalies to occ…

Winter Starts Again Thursday

Do not be fooled by this nice stretch of weather; El Nino is still out there which means the potential for winter storms is still very strong.

One such winter storm will show up very early on Thursday morning:

This is a very strong storm for this time of year and will usher in a pattern change that will last a week and put our nice stretch of weather far in the rear view mirror.

As you can see by the map above, a series of storms is headed our way with the final storm in the series due about a week from today.

This pattern change will usher in much cooler and much more unstable air. That means very windy over the course of the next week with snow levels at times approaching 5,500 feet!

What is amazing about this pattern change, occurring in the middle of May, is the amount of precip that is coming with it. Here is the precip forecast for the next week. Folks, we could see up to 5 feet of snow in the Western Crest of the High Sierra

I believe Slide Mountain will pick up 2-3 feet of sno…

El Nino Through 2019; Unofficial Rose Back Online

First and foremost; the Unofficial Mt. Rose website and our good friend Sven, is back online. After a change of internet address it can now be found at the following location, be sure to subscribe by email when you get there:

Unofficial Mt. Rose

We are counting 3 storms that will cruise through the area over the next week or so as our weather pattern remains unstable. We do not expect these storms to produce much precipitation, but our weather, especially in the Sierra, will remain cloudy and very windy.

Perhaps more important is trying to figure out what happened starting around the 1st of January. We have been on the storm track, literally, for the past 3 months.

We believe that the solar minimum coupled with a weak to moderate El Nino is what is effecting our weather. If you take a look at the following chart, we could be seeing more of the same, possibly lasting through 2019!

With the exception of 1 outlier, the weather models all agree that El Nino will last through the end of the…

No April Fools; 3 Storms in 7 Days

The powder days aint over yet as we are tracking 3 storms in the next 7 days. The middle storm is quite large for this time of year and will bring powder to the mountain.

Storm 1 (4/1 - 4:00 am - 4/3 - 2:00am)
Storm 1 will last slightly less than 48 hours. This is a fairly weak storm and a very warm storm. I expect snow levels to start in the neighborhood of 9,000-10,000 feet. Eventually those levels will drop to the 7,000 foot range. There will be strong shadowing and I expect only light rain/snow for the Carson Range.

Storm 2 (4/5 - 2:00pm - 4/6 - 11:00pm)
This is a much larger storm and is the storm we talked about in past posts that we have been tracking for late in the first week in April. However, this storm is very fast moving and will clear the area in about 36 hours. It will be cooler and has the possibility of bringing very strong winds to the area.

If this storm stalls or is delayed, it could mean a major event for the area. We will have to keep an eye on it.

Storm 3 comes al…

Next 10 Days: Heavy Mountain Snow and Valley Rain, Significant Warming, Inside Sliders

Wow, what a winter we are seeing ... with no end in sight. The next 10 days will bring us a mix of just about everything. We warned about an unusually large, spring storm on track for next week. That is actually now two storms and both storms are taking aim at Tahoe and will produce significant precipitation. We see storms blasting our mountains starting Monday night and lasting through Friday of next week. Here is a look at the peak of the storm, next Wednesday around noon (3/27):

Once these storms have passed, we could be looking at a reasonably pleasant weekend as high pressure sets up just off the coast. This will allow warm air to come into our area and we could even see average or even above average temperatures from the 30th of March through most of the 1st of April.

Unfortunately, our ridge is then going to get kicked further out off the coast which sets up our worst weather pattern. Cold air will come down from the north, around that ridge and bring a series of very cold slid…

El Nino's Grip on Tahoe to remain Tight

We have a couple of storms on tap for this week starting Wednesday. Please see the prior post or the daily weather outlets (as they have caught on) for a complete review.

However, we are tracking what could be a major spring storm that the EC weather model believes will slam Tahoe. This storm will approach the coast early next Tuesday (3/26). It will stall out and bring heavy precip to the Northern California and Southern Oregon coasts. Eventually it will move on shore, rise up over the Sierra and hit Tahoe. As the storm moves north, it's precip tail will slide south to Mammoth and parts of SoCal.

Here is a look at the storm as it approaches:

24 hours later it will begin to rise over the Sierra:

Again it will stall out, until it makes it's way further inland. As the main storm system does that, it will pull much cooler air out of the north:

Eventually, this storm will move out, but after 3-4 days. This time of year there is a much greater shadowing effect, so the amount of pre…

Think Winter is Over? Think Again; Next Storm Cycle Starts Early Wednesday

Who knew the sky is actually blue? I certainly had forgotten that. We all had a very nice reminder and will continue to be reminded for a couple of more days; then the next storm cycle starts and this looks to be another good one.

We will start with Wednesday (3/20):

This is a weaker, warmer system, but the backside of this system will bring in some cold air. It will clear out early on Thursday. Then, late on Friday or early Saturday (3/23) the next storm comes in. It is packing more moisture and will be much colder:

That storm will hang around through mid-day Sunday, then after another short break, another storm comes in from the south and west:

We are trying not to get too far ahead of ourselves, and these storms are much weaker than what we have seen, but in the week starting next Wednesday, we are expecting about 2-3 additional feet up at Mt. Rose and probably more around the Western Crest and down in Mammoth.

Stay Tuned ...

Blocking Ridge Going to Keep Us High and Dry for the Next 8-10 Days

A ridge of high pressure is dominating our weather and will continue to do so for at least the next 8-10 days. Right now that ridge is a little too far off the coast, allowing weak systems to drop in from the north, but that ridge is going to edge closer to the coast and block everything trying to make it's way to our area.

When the ridge does finally setup, I expect temperatures to actually creep above average, possibly as soon as this weekend. For now, these weak systems coming down from the north will keep us below average. Those temps will inch up until we finally see some sign of spring.

Stay Tuned ...

Last Storm in Cycle, Knocking at the Door

If you have read our last few posts, you know that another pretty good sized storm is headed our way that will effect the entire state of California for the next 3 days.

We believe this will be the last storm in this most recent cycle. Of course, the storms have come so close together that it has been difficult to define a storm cycle.

Also, because of the recent storm history and the fact there is still plenty of weather out there, our confidence is not exactly high that we may be entering a dry period, but for now that is what the models are saying.

The peak of this storm should be about mid-morning tomorrow:

We are staying with our earlier prediction that snow levels should average around 6,500 - 7,000 feet, which means a likely mixed bag at lake level and all rain for the leeward valleys. These storm will spill over and we expect decent amounts of rain for the valleys.

Here is a look at the storm total, not what we have been seeing, but storms do weaken the later we get into the y…

60 Feet in 60 Days; Not Possible? Think Again

Imagine: No Blower Trucks, No 4 Wheel Drive and No Weather Forecasting computer models. In 1846, we hit a similar weather pattern where it literally snowed for 2 straight months, starting in late October! The rest is history and we now have Donner pass and Donner lake to commemorate the 39 lost souls in the Sierra who attempted to cross the pass and were caught by an early and unforgiving winter.

Folks, this is the snow belt and we should not be surprised by anything Ma Nature throws our way. What is a bit surprising is our record breaking winter, just 2 years ago, looks like it may fall by the wayside. I say that because we are tracking 3 more major winter storms in the next 10 days that will continue to dump copious amounts of snow on the Sierra. Remember, we had a very slow start to the season and we even heard complaints about our above average snowfall prediction. To which we replied, "Just Wait".

Now 2 months later there are areas of the Sierra that will have picked up…

Change in Forecast: It is Going to Snow Forever!

If you read our last post, the first storm that we thought would miss us and not get over the Sierra has been given a powerful shot of energy. Couple that with a moisture tap to the sub-tropics and we have all the makings for another major winter storm.

We should not be surprised. 2019 has been this way and looks to continue being this way. So the next storm cycle starts ... now!

The leading edge is creating violent down slope winds for the leeward valleys and especially the foot hills with 100+mph gusts being recorded and wreaking havoc up and down the range.

Behind it:

Notice the moisture tail that extends to the end of the earth! This is the forecast for today (2/25) at 4:00 pm.

This is only gets better (or worse, depending on your perspective). This should continue through Thursday with some of the heaviest precip we have seen this year.

On it's heels, the storm we talked about last post, here is a look at the forecast for noon on Saturday:

But this just keeps getting better. …

Next Storm Cycle is not Far Off

Not much has changed since our last post. This last storm was another overachiever. That storm has moved on and high pressure is going to setup along the cost. Our temperatures will gradually warm. Here is a look at the current weather:

You can clearly see the ridge of high pressure that will dominate our weather. We could see a very weak slider this weekend, but by next week we will be back close to average temps.

However, like everything else since we turned 2019, that is going to change when the next storm cycle comes in. We will start to feel the change around the 26th. Our ridge of high pressure is going to get bumped well south and that should open the storm door once again. Here is a look at the forecast for the 26th, notice the difference between the map above and the map below:

You can notice the storms are beginning to stack up. Then around March 2nd, the next cycle of storms begins with the arrival of the first storm:

Notice the distinct storm track around the high pressure…

El Nino is Underrated; 12 Days Until Next Storm Cycle

40 feet in 40 days. That is very close to what much of the Sierra has picked up in the last 6 weeks. Now, we can catch our breath for the next 10-12 days before the next storm cycle shows up. The next will be warmer with potential sub-tropical moisture, not unlike what we saw last week.

Between now and then, we expect cooler than average temperatures. However, we will be moving closer to average by next weekend. Between now and then, we have a small slider that will drop down and reinforce our cold air. We do not expect much precipitation out of this one.

Stay Tuned ...

Don't Like the Rain; Here Comes the Snow!

Heavy rain from 8,500 feet down to the valley floor for the entire Tahoe region. I would not be surprised to see some thunder and lightening as we are now in the most intense precip portion of this particular storm.

That is all going to change.

Starting this afternoon, snow levels will begin to fall. By tomorrow morning all this rain, for all our readers, will be snow.

As usual the snow will be the heaviest in the mountains. Here is a look at tonight around 10:00, notice the blue lines now in our area, that is cold air, the red has been shoved well south:

This very cold trough in the jet will continue to push south until we have snow all the way down to 3,500 feet.

This will turn into a major winter storm and the NWS, rightfully so, is concerned about travel, especially over the passes, tomorrow and Saturday.

I would not be surprised to see Mt. Rose pick up an additional 3-5 feet of snow. The upper layer should be of the champagne powder variety. Here is why this is possible:

I believ…

Don't Let Rain Fool You, This Will Turn into a Major Winter Storm by Friday

A massive Pacific storm is pounding the area with rain and snow. As was forecast, the snow started very low, but now the warm air is mixing and snow levels are shooting up. We still expect rain at 10,000 feet for at least a short period, but reports have been coming in with rain at 7,000 feet already. That will continue to climb. Here is a look at what will change the entire dynamic of this storm:

As our moisture rich southern storm continues to pound the area with rain and high elevation snow, another, much colder storm is going to slam right into it. This will in all likelihood cause a major winter storm for all of the Tahoe area and the leeward foothills of Reno and Carson City with blizzard conditions similar to what we saw last Saturday.

The timing looks to be around early Friday morning, but could be later as the cold air will mix in with the warm air, this makes exact timing very difficult to predict.

We expect several reinforcing waves of cold air and heavy snow between Friday…

Grand Finale Starts - Now Lasts Through Next Weekend

We talked about two storms colliding to form one very powerful storm. We also talked about high pressure moving in after the weekend and a third, very cold storm for the weekend. Now, the third storm is going to collide with the first two and produce a huge weather event that will last through next weekend.

The wildcard is snow levels. They will definitely start very low and then rise rapidly as the southern storm infuses warm, subtropical air and moisture into the equation. Lots of it. Then, just as rapidly snow levels will plummet, all the way to the valley floor by next weekend.

Here is what the European model (most reliable) is seeing over the next 5 days. The further north the red lines, the warmer the air:

This evening (2/12), we are right on the proverbial Mason/Dixon line of warm and cold air. We believe snow levels will now start around 5,500 feet, which means all (or mostly) rain for the valley.

Tomorrow (2/13) at noon, warm air dominating tons of moisture and precip, snow l…

3 Cold Storms Poised to Rock Tahoe

We are tracking 3 storms for the next week, all on the colder side. All taking aim at Tahoe. All impressive in their own way. The first storm is hitting us now, we talked about it last post. It showed up right on time. It will move quickly and be mostly out of here by noon tomorrow (2/10). This storm is ushering in a pretty impressive cold front. Anybody who was up on Rose today prior to the lifts closing down probably felt some of the coldest air of the winter.

In our last post we talked about two storms converging on Tahoe from the North and South. Here is a look at the forecast for early Tuesday (2/12) morning:

You can clearly see the two storms. These two storms are on a collision course and will actually join forces to become one big storm by Tuesday night:

This storm is going to hammer the entire state of California including Lake Tahoe and surrounding area.

This storm will clear out by Thursday at noon, not before dumping many feet of snow in our area and probably even more dow…

20 Feet of Snow in Last Month With More on the Way

The weather pattern will remain very active with a series of storms bearing down on Tahoe.  Like our last few storms, these storms come in with very cold air and should be all snow for all Tahoe resorts. Remember, the later we get in the season, the tougher it is for storms to get over to our side of the lake.

The first of the storms, will be shadowed almost entirely by the Sierra. In fact we are not looking for much precip anywhere, but what little falls, will be at the crest on the other side of the lake. Here is a look at the first storm which will begin to effect the area late Friday night (2/9):


This storm slams into the Sierra and then dips south. However, that will open the door for the next storm to drop in from the north. That storm will show up late Saturday afternoon (2/10) and will impact both sides of the lake:

This storm should hang around throughout all of Sunday. The following week has several large storms, that will be warmer, that could bring even more snow to Taho…

Storm Update - Leeward Valleys Could See Heavy Snow

For a complete recap of what is going to happen in the Carson Range and Sierra, see the last 2 posts. This update is to warn the folks who live in the leeward valleys (Reno and Carson), that the potential exists for heavy snow starting Sunday afternoon and lasting through Tuesday afternoon.
We have seen this pattern before, as a colder storm drops down on a near perfect trajectory to spill over the mountains and into the valley. 
The potential exists for 1-3 feet in the foothills and up to a foot on the valley floor.
Mt. Rose could see as much as 6-8 feet of snow between now and next Wednesday!
These storms will put us over our season average for a 4th straight year. As we like to say, averages have a way of catching up, so enjoy the great skiing and riding conditions!
Stay Tuned ...

Storm Strengthens; Puts Tahoe in Cross hair

The end of our dry period is around 24 hours away. We have talked about this storm for a few weeks now and it is shaping up to be a very active 4-day weather event.

First, here is the precip forecast:

We are now looking at 4-5 inches of liquid for the Carson Range, while the western side of the lake, in the High Sierra could be looking at 7-8 inches of liquid. Areas down around Mammoth could see up to 10 inches of liquid precip.

We have bumped up our Carson Range precip totals to 2-5 feet of snow. We are leaning in the 40 inch range, but that could go higher or lower.

As far as elevations are concerned, we believe this will be all snow for Mt. Rose. The leading edge of very warm air will see snow levels in the 7,000 foot range, but those will quickly fall all the way down to 4,000 feet by Sunday night. This will be very beneficial for all Tahoe Resorts!

The peak of the precip should be all day Saturday. Then a very short break and starting up again Sunday afternoon and lasting through…