Morning photo: One more storm …

April showers …

Clearing storm in the North Tenmile Creek drainage, Frisco, Colorado.

Clearing storm in the North Tenmile Creek drainage, Frisco, Colorado.

FRISCO — If the weathermen are right, this may truly have been the last big snowstorm of the season (but who knows, right?) so I had to pick out just a few more shots from an early morning Frisco iPhone walkabout. Snow is good anytime of the year, but the late-April bonus storms are the best, not just for the scenery, but for the sake of boosting our mountain snowpack. Continue reading

Colorado: Winter weather and wind warnings hoisted

‘A swift river of moist Pacific air …’

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Pacific moisture and Arctic cold are headed for Colorado.

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State snowpack could use a boost.

By Bob Berwyn

FRISCO — National Weather Service forecasters generally don’t wax poetic in their forecasts, but the latest update from the Denver-Boulder office includes phrases that will ring musically in the ears of snow-starved Colorado skiers and water managers.

In short, it’s going to be cold, snowy and windy — conditions we haven’t seen in the high country for about nine months, since sometime last February. Ahead of the storm, forecasters have issued a high wind warning for Summit County and the northern Front Range for 11 p.m. Friday through 5 p.m. Saturday evening. Winds of 50 to 60 mph are expected, with near-hurricane force gusts up to 80 mph possible after midnight. Continue reading

Colorado: Winter storm flags are flying

A big, cold Pacific storm is moving toward Colorado.

Widespread snow, cold temps expected across Colorado this weekend

By Summit Voice

FRISCO — After an extended Indian Summer that saw many Summit County spots flirt with record high temps for late October and early November, thing are about to change drastically.

A cold Pacific storm will sweep across the state this weekend, potentially delivering up to two feet of snow in the San Juans, with up to 12 inches possible across many mountain areas. The best moisture appears to be associated with the approaching cold front, so the heaviest snow amounts look to be in areas favored by southwest flow, including the San Juans, the Steamboat area, the West Elks and the Flatttops, but the I-70 corridor won’t get completely skunked. Continue reading

Colorado: Clash of the seasons

Snow in the forecast for Thursday night

Moisture from the southwest combined with a surge of colder air from the northwest could bring some flurries of snow to the higher elevations Thursday night.

Last year saw significant snow accumulate along the Continental Divide on Sept. 17.

By Bob Berwyn

FRISCO — One more day of late-summer conditions before a seasonal clash of weather systems brings more rain — and possibly a dusting of snow to some of the high peaks in Colorado, according to the National Weather Service.

High pressure prevails Monday ahead of a surge of moisture from the southwest that will bring increasing clouds Monday evening then some cooler conditions and a good chance of showers Tuesday and especially Tuesday evening. The incoming moisture has triggered flash flood watches for west-central Utah.

Forecast highs for Frisco are only in the 50s for Wednesday and Thursday, the coolest temps for the area since last May. Forecast lows could dip down to the mid to low 30s Wednesday and especially Thursday night, as a colder system pushes into the area from the northwest during the day Thursday. Continue reading

Weather: Dry spring?

Climate Prediction Center February to April will be warm and dry

The 2012 late December snowpack in the U.S. was the lowest in recent years.

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By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — After several months of forecasting increased odds of above-normal snowfall for the 2011-2012 winter season, NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center has shifted gears and has upped the odds for below-normal precipitation for February through April.

According to NOAA, La Niña has peaked at about half the strength of last winter, and hasn’t influenced the weather as expected, at least so far. While the last few weeks have seen a shift in the larger pattern, the jet stream is still staying mainly north of Colorado and not driving down from the Northwest with abundant moisture like last winter.

Check out NOAA’s snow analysis web page for animated maps of precipitation and snow cover. Continue reading

Colorado: Blizzard warning for high country

Dangerous travel conditions expected along high mountain passes

A blizzard warning is in effect for parts of the Colorado high country.

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — Incoming snow, combined with winds from 30 to 50 mph have prompted the National Weather Service to issue a blizzard warning for the north-central Colorado mountains through 12 pm. Thursday (Jan. 20).

The warning covers Summit County and Clear Creek County, as well as the northern Front Range mountains, and extends west to the Vail and Aspen areas, as well as south to Fairplay. The most dangerous conditions will be around the high mountain passes, with lesser potential for blizzard conditions in the valleys around Aspen and Vail. Continue reading

Summit County: Dismally dry December

Snowfall totals the lowest since 2001-2002 drought

Gorgeous ice on Dillon Reservoir is a sign of low snowfall.

By Bob Berwyn

SUMMIT COUNTY — December 2011 was the eighth-driest on record in Breckenridge, where weather watcher Rick Bly recorded only 7.6 inches of snow for the month, compared to more than 20 inches on average.

Last year, Bly tallied 32.5 inches of snow in December. Click here to see all of last year’s December weather stats.

The totals were even worse at the National Weather Service site Dillon, where Denver Water personnel measured a meager 1.5 inches of snow, amounting to 0.10 inches of moisture — one of the driest Decembers on record. The average December snowfall at Dillon is 17.5 inches, with a snow-water equivalent of 1.11 inches. Last year the Dillon site reported about 23 inches of snow in December. Continue reading

Weatherblog: Sitting in Splitsville

Dry forecast through middle of next week

A split storm track persists, with little snow in the outlook for Summit County, but good bands of moisture across Texas, which really needs the rain.

By Bob Berwyn

SUMMIT COUNTY — It looks like we’ll have to wait a bit longer for some decent snow, as the next storm system on the horizon is once again set to split, with most of the energy moving north and south of Colorado, with a dry forecast through the middle of next week.

The current storm continues to favor the San Juans, with another 8 inches reported at Purgatory and Wolf Creek the past 24 hours and 16 inches at Silverton Mountain. The snowfall came as far north as Snowmass, which reported 6 inches of new snow Wednesday morning.

The 48-hour torm totals for the San Juans — where the backcountry avalanche danger is high — include 16 inches at Purgatory and 14 inches at Wolf Creek, where the base is now a healthy 58 inches. Continue reading

Weather: More upslope ahead?

Current storm track not favoring most mountain areas, but foothills and metro area could seen steady weekend snows

Recent satellite images show a classic split-flow pattern that does not favor Colorado with snow. A big chunk of storm energy is moving through western Canada, with a secondary system passing through Arizona and New Mexico.

A big snowstorm hit Thursday in Summit County — not!

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — Winter storm watches, warnings and advisories notwithstanding, most of Colorado’s mountains got skunked by the first part of the most recent storm, which is still spinning somewhere down over Southern California, where Santa Ana winds knocked over huge eucalyptus trees. Check out this LA Times photoblog for some dramatic images.

The winds have been blowing in Cali since yesterday, when an automated weather station atop Mammoth Mountain Ski Area reported gusts of up to 150 mph.

Continue reading

Weatherblog: Ready for some more snow?

Winter weather advisory, 4 to 7 inches of snow possible Sunday night and Monday.

Cooler temps, gusty winds expected

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — In a pattern reminiscent of last winter’s sustained La Niña, the northern mountains should get clipped by a fast-moving storm that could drop between 4 and 7 inches of snow at elevations above 8,500 feet.

West-facing slopes will be favored by orographic conditions — as the moist flow out of the west is pushed up over the mountains, the moisture will be squeezed out west and along the Continental Divide.

A winter advisory is in effect from 12 p.m. Sunday through 3 p.m. Monday, with snowfall developing rapidly along and behind a southward-moving front, with Park, Gore and Elk Ranges singled out for significant accumulations of about 6 inches by early Monday afternoon. Continue reading

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