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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

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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

Weatherblog: Some spring powder in Summit County?

Wilderness Sports sponsors the Summit Voice weatherblog. Click to visit Wilderness Sports online.

Winter weather advisories posted for Tuesday night through late Wednesday

A spring sunset over Buffalo Mountain in Summit County, Colorado. BOB BERWYN PHOTO.

A big-picture view of the Pacific shows a big subtropical jet stream far to the south and some remnant winter energy swirling in the Gulf of Alaska. In between, an area of disturbed weather will move across the Rockies the next few days, bringing some fresh snow.

By Bob Berwyn

SUMMIT COUNTY — A classic spring storm is rolling across the West, marked by a deep trough of low pressure extending down into the desert Southwest. As an “inside slider,” the low will move east of the Continental Divide and set up a deep, moist northeast flow that could produce significant snowfall on the east slope of the Front Range under upslope conditions.

A winter weather advisory from 12 p.m. Tuesday night to 6 p.m. Wednesday (May 11), with 4 to 8 inches of snow possible above 7,000 feet along the Front Range. The winter weather advisory extends to the higher terrain of Summit County, where the National Weather forecast also calls for the chance of 4 to 8 inches of snow across the higher terrain. A-Basin could pick up some decent snow once the weather system moves east of the area Wednesday and the flow switches around to the north.

Farther west and south, around Vail, Aspen and Crested Butte, a winter storm warning is in effect, with heavier snow expected across south-facing slopes Tuesday night, shifting to north-facing slopes Wednesday. Continue reading

Summit County weatherblog: Warming up!

Wilderness Sports sponsors the Summit Voice weatherblog. Click to visit Wilderness Sports online.

This isn't exactly the kind of May flower we're hoping to see, but pretty nonetheless. It's a frost crystal growing on the tip of a blade of dead grass in a muddy runoff puddle near the Lilypad Lake trailhead.

Many daily record highs for May have been set in the past 10 years — a sign of global warming?

By Bob Berwyn

SUMMIT COUNTY — If you’ve been patiently waiting for a warmup, you’re time is almost here. By the end of the week, temps could soar into the upper 50s as the polar jet stream pulls back to near the Canadian border.

But first, look for another chance of showers the next 48 hours or so, especially north of I-70, as a weak cold front sags south from Idaho, dropping highs on Wednesday by about 5 degrees.

Once that system passes, the outlook is for a relatively dry scenario across the area through the first part of the weekend, with the forecast beyond that indicating the chance for another stronger system to dig into the West for the start of next week, but the models are still a bit muddled. Continue reading

Weatherblog: Wintry weekend, snowpack still growing

A map showing the Colorado snowpack on April 29, 2011.

Amazing snowpack readings around much of Colorado.

4 to 8 inches of snow possible by Saturday morning

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — After a short taste of spring, it looks like winter will make a comeback over the weekend as a strong cold front dives southeast out of Utah and sweep across Colorado, bringing a chance for several inches of snow. Much of the high country is under a winter weather advisory through mid-day Saturday, with 4 to 8 inches of snow possible in the northern mountains.Freeze warnings have been issued for the western valleys of Colorado. Moderate to heavy snow could fall with the passage of the front Friday afternoon and evening, with showers lingering into the first part of the weekend.

The warmest temperatures of the weekend are likely Friday morning. The front will drop readings by as much as 20 degrees, with forecast highs below freezing (about 29 degrees) both Saturday and Sunday, then rebounding to reach the mid-40s again by the middle of next week. Those readings are well below normal, with average high in Frisco for April 30 at 51 degrees. The record high is 70 degrees, set in 1943, and the record low is 5 degrees, set in 1918. Continue reading

Weatherblog: Breckenridge to top 500 inches of snow

Wilderness Sports sponsors the Summit Voice weatherblog. Click to visit Wilderness Sports online.

Winter weather advisory through Tuesday; wet week ahead

By Bob Berwyn

Follow Summit Voice on Twitter for the most up-to-date news feed.

SUMMIT COUNTY — With the higher elevations of Summit County under a winter weather advisory through Tuesday, Breckenridge Ski Area is all but certain to record more than 500 inches of snow for the season, according to the resort’s website, which is showing 496 inches total snowfall as of April 18.

Satellite images suggest that the season will end the way it began at Breckenridge — under a juicy northwest flow off the Pacific that will bring on and off showers for the last week of the season. The short-term forecast from the National Weather Service calls for a chance of 4 to 8 inches by Tuesday afternoon, and  Colorado Avalanche Information Center forecasters  — generally conservative at forecasting totals — say 6 to 9 inches is possible Monday night. Continue reading

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