Tuesday will be warm and sunny, and then a system from the southwest will drop a bit of snow on our patrol zone on Wednesday evening / Thursday morning.  Here are the model snow forecasts:

4” – European Model

3” – Canadian Model

1” – American Model

Then, temperatures warm, and both Saturday and Sunday look to be seasonally mild, mostly sunny, with our typical westerly winds.  The next storm looks to come in next Monday/Tuesday, with moisture from both the northwest and southwest.  Here are the model snow forecasts:

9” – American Model

6” – Canadian and European Models

The American and European Models follow up that system with more snow next week, while the Canadian Model does not.

Retrospective Discussion:

Yet again, the Friday storm outperformed the models.  Eldora picked up 11”, so the WRF Model was the closest at 8”, the Canadian Model was second at 7”, and the other models predicted less than half the storm (the American, European, and NAM Models), with the RDPS predicting less than one third of the storm.  While we’re on a streak of the storms being larger than predicted, let’s not lose sight of the fact that we’re just having an average snow year (it’s just that the models are consistently predicting less snow).  The three Snotels in our patrol zone (Lake Eldora, University Camp, and Niwot) are at 93%, 93%, and 101%, respectively. 


-Jordan (Tuesday 2/20/24 morning)

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: Amazon.com: 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.