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SnoCast: Who’s Getting Lucky on the Slopes?

Sugarloaf_tw_031622 Soft, buttery turns ahead on the slopes ahead in the northeast, including at Sugarloaf in Maine (Sugarloaf/Twitter)

Don't get too excited...we're talking about the weather forecast. This St. Patrick’s Day, many ski areas will feel extra lucky with new snow for some, and soft, buttery spring-like turns for others. Here’s the outlook in this week’s SnoCast.

West

We’ll start in the West, where no one should be green with envy this St. Patrick’s Day. That’s because the pattern favors shots of snow for many through the weekend.

 

On Thursday (St. Patrick’s Day), a storm will continue to drop heavy snow in Colorado and New Mexico, quickly departing by day's end, leaving behind as much as 10-18” of fresh powder for the southern Rockies. This adds onto a recent snowy stretch of March, which has allowed some ski areas to announce an extension of season, including Monarch Mountain in Colorado. 

A mainly dry Friday gives way to an active weekend for the West. A cold front presses in from the Pacific on Saturday, delivering high elevation snow, a general 3-8” with more at the highest passes, up and down the coastal states' peaks from the Washington Cascades, southward to California’s Sierras. Good news for places like Crystal MountainSummit at Snoqualmie, Timberline, and even down to the Tahoe area. 

This system presses inland to the interior West and Rockies by Sunday and Monday. Look for a general 2-6” coast across the interior western mountains, with perhaps higher totals in the tallest Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming peaks, through Monday.

Temperatures begin to warm up for nearly all areas early and mid-next week in the West with snow levels almost too high for good snow. But the pot of gold at the end of this rainbow is the return of cold air late next week coming in from Canada with potential for more heavy snow in the Canadian and US Rockies.

East

The East may want to rub its lucky charm to keep winter around a bit longer. While there's not much snow in the forecast, there will be plenty of spring-like, soft-buttery turns on the slopes with a mild stretch for the days following St. Patrick’s Day. 

A storm that will have dropped snow in parts of Colorado quickly ejects into the Plains and tracks through the Lower Great Lakes by Saturday. This keeps any snow on the northwest side, with a thin ribbon of 2-5” of snow in Wisconsin, with potential for good snow near Cascade and Tyrol Basin

Unfortunately, most places east of the storm will be in the warm sector by Saturday and see more (shall we call it...?) "liquid sunshine". In fact, stay alert on Saturday as parts of the southeast might even have to content with some passing thunderstorms. 

As the storm center presses northeast into Canada by Sunday, some cold air wraps around on the backside of the system for the northeast Sunday night to Monday with just a light coat of upslope snow on the peaks of New York’s Adirondacks, Vermont, and New Hampshire. Watch for a quick 1-4" around Stowe, Jay Peak, Whiteface, and Bretton Woods. This area just received heavy snow with 1-2 feet during last weekend's storm!

Early next week remains dry for most of the East with a slow warming trend as the next storm lifts out of the central Plains which will likely bring a combination burst of snow to wintry mix or [liquid sunshine] by end of next week. We’ll keep an eye on that system in next week’s SnoCast.

Until next time, Happy St. Patrick’s Day, and may the luck of the Irish bless your skis and boards.

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