Forecast Summary:

Pleasant weather for a while.  There’s possibly a big storm late next week.

Forecast Discussion:

Today light snow remains possible with an inch of snow possible but not likely. 

A weak ridge of high pressure (i.e., warmer and sunnier weather) looks to be in store for almost the foreseeable future, as a strong storm hangs out over California without moving inland for a while.

When the system does move in to our patrol zone, who knows what will happen.  The American model has it moving inland on Wednesday to Thursday and producing 25” of snow.  (You read that right.)  The Canadian Model doesn’t have it coming in until Friday, with 2.5” on Friday and 1” on Saturday.  The European Model agrees with the Canadian Model on timing (it won’t come in until Friday / Saturday) and is calling for 7” at Eldora.  The European Model is, however, calling for 30” on Pikes Peak. 

I think the best conclusions we can draw this far out is there may be a big storm late next week, but when and how big is completely up in the air (no pun intended).

Retrospective Discussion:

Life is a challenge without the Eldora webcam on their snowstake running.  Snotel data is not terribly reliable, but it looks like there was no real accumulation this week of snow based upon the lack of any real change in SWE (snow water equivalent) at the Lake Eldora Snotel site. 

As such, it looks like the WRF Model (with its pessimistic forecast) was the most accurate and the Canadian Model (with its optimistic forecast) was the least accurate for this week so far.

Stay sane, healthy, and happy my fellow patrollers.

-Jordan (Friday morning)

Note: Unless otherwise noted, all forecasts are for 10,000’ in exposed areas.  References to American Model are the American (GFS) Model.  References to the Canadian Model are the Canadian (GDPS) Model.  References to the WRF Model are the CAIC WRF Hi-Res Model.  References to the European Model are the European (ECMWF) Model.