The brunt of the storms currently pounding the Pacific Coast currently look to likely stay to our west, north, and south once they move inland.  It’s unusual to say that heading nearly any direction will mean snow, but unfortunately that’s likely true over the next week. 

As such, while we’ll likely get snow from Wednesday to Sunday, the totals will unfortunately not be huge.  The first wave of snow will be on Wednesday and Thursday, and here are the model forecasts for our patrol zone:

3” – European Model

2” – UK Met Model

1” – Canadian and American Models

The second wave will likely be on Friday through Sunday.  Here are the model forecasts:

4” – Canadian Model

2” – American and UK Met Models

1” – European Model

Fingers crossed the models are wrong and we end up getting more snow.

Retrospective Discussion:

Unfortunately, Eldora only picked up 5” of snow from the storm, much less than half as much than my house in Golden or Winter Park – it seems to have snowed everywhere else.  Five days away, the UK Met Model his it dead on, with the American Model too high, and the European and Canadian Models way too high.  Two days away, the American, UK Met, RDPS, and WRF Models were all basically spot on, with the NAM Model too high, and the Canadian and European Models way too high. 

-Jordan (Monday 2/5/24 Evening)

Geeky Notes:

References to the American Model are to the American (GFS) Model grid including Brainerd Lake with an average elevation of 9,439’.  References to the Canadian Model are the Canadian (GDPS) Model grid including Brainerd Lake with an average elevation of 10,253’.  References to the WRF Model are the CAIC WRF Hi-Res Model point forecast for Eldora Ski Area with an elevation of 9,189’.  References to the European Model are to the European (ECMWF) Model on a point with my cursor at my best estimate of Eldora Ski Area.  For big picture overviews, I tend to rely on the American Model, not because I think it is the most accurate, but because (i) it is free and (ii) I like its interface. 

If you want more details on these forecasts, feel free to buy my Hunting Powder book at Hunting Powder: A Skier’s Guide to Finding Colorado’s Best Snow: Lipp, Jordan, Gratz, Joel: 9780578838533: Books.  How is that for an absolutely shameless plug?  Or, the next time you see me at a patrol function, just ask me any questions on how I put together these non-professional forecasts.  Cheers.