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SnoCountry SnoCast: Let It Snow

SnoCountry SnoCast: Let It Snow

Let's fill these chairs! Jay Peak Resort boasts a foot of fresh snow in the past 72 hours.  (Jay Peak Resort/Facebook)  

So far, I like the look of December. Now that it’s cold enough, several systems will help build up our snow totals and keep smiles on your faces! Let’s dig into this week’s SnoCast.


December promises to bring more cold and snow. Check out how the snow cover has improved over the past week. We're building up the snow all over the place- (check latest snow reports here). A sure sign winter is off to a solid start. Snow depth over the Pacific Northwest and British Columbia still dominate the maps, and will (again) have some of the most snow in this week's outlook.

Snow cover across the US and parts of Canada

Here's the forecast breakdown by region for the next several days:

West: Coming off a pretty cold couple of days and fresh new snow at so many mountains, another storm system will bring big snow through the end of the week (especially the higher peaks) for the mountains of California Thursday, then press northward to Oregon, Washington,and Idaho through the end of the week.This area already has some of the country's deepest snow depth- check local avalanche conditions (it's that deep). Generally 4-8” for many northwest mountain bases, but look for higher totals 1-2 feet through Saturday over the higher Cascades in Washington and Oregon, and also in the high terrain of the Sierra, perhaps near Tahoe.

That system and energy eventually presses into Utah, Wyoming, and Colorado through the weekend, leaving behind several inches of fresh snow for the weekend for many ski areas. With a fast west to east flowing jet stream up above, systems will be quick, and dump snow, but timing will be a big challenge, so forecasts beyond the weekend are going to be "iffy." Check the forecast often for early next week's outlook. 

National Weather Service forecase snowfall map through Friday, December 9 for the western US.

Midwest/Northeast: The Northeast continues to build up the base with shots of snow. A cold front drops in from Canada Friday, allowing cold air to fill in. This will help generate lake effect snow off the great lakes (good news for the Adirondacks in New York), and will also help generate a light snow in New England’s mountains through the end of the week. A few inches of upslope snow will create a soft coat on what’s already on the ground.

Watch for another system early next week (Monday, Dec, 12) as a stronger storm moves into the Great Lakes region/Northeast. This one could bring higher totals for our slopes.

National Weather Service forecast snowfall map through Dec. 9 for Eastern U.S. (NWS)

Canada: So far this season, most of the love from Mother Nature has been over western Canada. Some of the deepest snow in north America lives over B.C., including at Cypress, Mt Seymour, and Whistler. To the east, pleasant changes in the forecast. Recent mild temperatures over Ontario and Quebec will be replaced by much colder weather in the days ahead. Snow showers for eastern Canada through the end of this week as low pressure pulls away through Hudson Bay. Look for a more potent system early next week (Monday, Dec 12) over eastern Canada, which will likely bring higher totals to the ski areas of Quebec and Ontario. Also, colder air will help aid in snow making.

Upper atmosphere pattern for late week shows troughing/colder air returning to eastern Canada and northeast. This should stay into next week

This colder pattern in eastern Canada and the eastern U.S. will set the stage for storms to drop the goods. If you buy the European model ensemble output for the Northeast/Canada, we shouldn't have any bare ground left by early next week. Forecast image below shows snowfall from today (Dec. 7) through Tuesday, Dec. 13. While actual totals will (no doubt) end up being different, this paints a nice chance of almost all areas here getting snow on the ground. 

 snowfall from Dec. 7 through Dec. 13

'Til next week's edition of SnoCast! Let it snow!  

And a special thanks for contributions each week from Lyndon State College students, Scott Myerson, Amanda Stone and Christopher Kurdek!

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SnoCountry SnoCast: December Arrives, Cold Not Far Behind

SnoCountry SnoCast: December Arrives, Cold Not Far Behind

Over 100" have already fallen at the higher mountains of British Columbia this season--including Whistler.  (Whistler Blackcomb/Facebook)

While there will be some temp swings in the days ahead, there will be opportunities for snow in many areas. Looking in the longer term, it looks like the coldest air of the season will settle in to some of the country in the not too distant future.

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SnoCountry SnoCast: Gobbling up the forecast

SnoCountry SnoCast: Gobbling up the forecast

Snow cover has really improved just this past week. We'll add to it in many areas with an active weather pattern ahead.

It may be the Thanksgiving week, but Mother Nature is going to deliver like it’s Christmas for some parts of the country. Check out the forecast details in this week’s delicious SnoCast.


 

Here’s the setup: A fairly active pattern lies ahead, with a few storm systems in the west providing ample moisture over the next seven days. Add in enough cold air at that means **snow** to many of our western ski areas, especially over the peaks of California, Oregon, Washington, and British Columbia. In the east, a solid pre-Thanksgiving week has ramped up the snowpack and base depth. A fickle forecast will provide windows of snow/cold to help build those bases as more ski areas look to open over the next two weeks.

Watch SnoCast video below, or keep scrolling for forecast info.

West: A storm system located off the Pacific Northwest coast will pump in moisture for Thanksgiving Day over the Washington Cascades and Canadian Rockies. This one delivers anywhere from 6-18” for many mountains in this area. Another potent storm plows into northern California Friday-Saturday, providing another 10-20 for the higher peaks of the Cascades, Coastal Range, and Sierra Nevada of California, Oregon, and Washington. Who needs shopping Friday when you’ve got fresh snow on the slopes? Look for another system over the Cascades then eastward into Idaho early next week (Nov. 28)- keep an eye on the forecast for amounts as we get closer. Take a look at snowfall forecast totals through Friday (Nov. 25).

Raw model forecast snow totals through Friday evening

East: After the first solid snow storm of the season only days ago, northeast ski areas are loving this change in the weather. Quite a few ski areas have opened up recently in the northeast, including Loon Mountain in New Hampshire. Check out this tweet on opening day, but more importantly, check out the snow! 

tweet from Loon

A brief shot of snow Thanksgiving day for the New York Adirondacks and northern New England peaks comes in advance of a brief warm-up Friday-Saturday. Recent snow will settle in a bit with this milder weekend. BUT, keep an eye on a storm system lurking near the southern New England coast through the weekend. While there's a lot of uncertainty still in exact position (as coastal storms are always a forecast challenge), if the low pressure stays close enough to the coast, we could wrap in little more fresh snow over the higher elevations of Vermont, Maine, and New Hampshire Saturday night-Sunday. At the very least, colder air will fill back in following this system to allow some snow making Sunday to Monday of next week.

tropical tidbits.com

 

Best Bets: There will be a lot of mountains that get fresh snow this week... so, three cheers for that (hip hip hooray)!  Your best bets will be any of the open ski areas for turns through the weekend. Check out who's turning lifts by visiting our open resorts section here on SnoCountry.com. 

Check back in next Wednesday for the next SnoCast! -Kerrin



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SnoCountry SnoCast: Keep Doing Your Snow Dance

SnoCountry SnoCast: Keep Doing Your Snow Dance

The forecast may not be ideal, but ski areas are determined to open. Loveland is set to spin chairs on Thursday, Nov. 10 and others hope to follow with help from Mother Nature. (Loveland/Facebook)

Still not exactly the weather pattern we all are hoping for in this week’s SnoCast. But, even if Mother Nature won’t deliver the big picture, we’ll find the small previews of winter weather to keep us giddy for what’s ahead. Here’s the breakdown of this week’s forecast.


Current Conditions: A strong ridge of high pressure still dominates the weather over much of the US, delivering mainly dry air and warm temps.

November 9 2016 high pressure

Forecast: However, small breakdowns of this ridge over the next week delivers a little moisture and brief windows of cold for snowmaking. Look for a brief colder period and a small coating of snow over northern New England/Quebec Friday into the start of the weekend (Nov. 11-12). In the west, two waves of moisture will bring mostly rain with the warmth, but some decent high elevation snow to British Columbia and some western peaks Friday night and again Sunday-Monday. Here's a look at one output from the GFS (American) model...overall, somewhat dismal outlook this stretch.

snowfall Nov. 9-15, 20q6

Canada: Look for some good accumulating snow over B.C. Friday night (Nov 11) - several inches likely for the coastal range, including Whistler Blackcomb which has already had an epic start this year for snowfall. Another wave of moisture brings several more inches to all B.C. ranges Sunday night to Monday (Nov. 13-14). A light dusting to two inches will also come with a period of cold and snowmaking opportunity for Quebec ski areas Friday-Saturday.  

East: A brief shot of colder air fills into New England Friday-Saturday (Nov. 11-12) which coats the mountains with a dusting to two inches. You bet the mountains that can will be snowmaking in hopes of getting the season underway ASAP. Unfortunately, it’s a short window, and warmth will slide back in to follow through early next week. The overall pattern may shift colder looking ahead toward the days leading up to and around Thanksgiving.

West: While most of the western outlook is dismal at best, look for a decent shot of snow (likely several inches) over the Washington Cascades Sunday night-Monday (Nov 13-14). What I’ll be watching for here is the bleed in of that moisture and colder air to perhaps deliver snow to more of the western mountains approaching mid next week (Nov. 15-17) … but will need a little more time to develop more certainty on that and amounts, which I’ll do in next week’s SnoCast.

Despite a somewhat crummy hand of cards dealt from Mother Nature, some ski areas are still set to open this week. Check out Loveland Ski Area's plan to spin chairs.  Until we can get a solid pattern change (which looks more likely in the last 10-12 days of this month) we will have to continue doing our snow dance, friends.

Think snowy thoughts, 'til next week's SnoCast!

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SnoCountry SnoCast: Treats, No Tricks In This Week's Forecast

SnoCountry SnoCast: Treats, No Tricks In This Week's Forecast

At least 100 guns on top to bottom Northern Lights, Borealis, Aludra, Lights Out, Lower Downdraft, and Paradigm at Maine's Sunday River. (Sunday River/Facebook)

As we transition into November in this week’s SnoCast, winter weather is making a more frequent appearance at our mountain tops. We’ll get shots of chilly air and snow at many mountains, both in the east and the west, so let’s dig in.

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SnoCountry SnoCast: Making Snow In East; Stormy Northwest

SnoCountry SnoCast: Making Snow In East; Stormy Northwest

Jackson Hole may see snow at upper elevations from the coming storm. (Jackson Hole Mountain Resort)

Get ready, skiers and riders. There are more early signs that the season isn’t far away.

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Northwest Season Keeps Going And Going And …

The snow gods smiled on the Pacific Northwest this season, with most mountain resorts getting at or slightly above normal snowfall – meaning they are pushing closing dates to the limit.

M. Baker spring

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Snoqualmie Land Purchase Connects Two Mountains

Snoqualmie EastMany more skiers and snowboarders will be able to move between Summit West and Summit Central much more easily next season, as The Summit at Snoqualmie has purchased land between the two mountains.

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Spring Storms Let More Resorts Extend Seasons - SoCal To NW

Snow Summit SpringJust when we thought El Niño has petered out on the mountains of the West, the metrological maiden has come on with force to put down as much as two feet as April begins.Thus, a number of resorts in the West have decided to stay open a bit longer. 

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Lifts To Keep On Churning In West; Mammoth Aims For Memorial Day

El Niño’s largesse has fallen mostly on Sierra and Pacific Northwest resorts this season, prompting several to extend their seasons and others just happy to make it to their usual closing date.

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Best 'Big Pow' Days Yet Set For Pacific Northwest

Mt. Hood Meadows powderThe northwest corner of the continent is set to have some of the best powder days in the nation this week – a far cry from last year but a welcome “return to normalcy” to the a region that typically measures snowfall in feet.

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Vertical Express For Multiple Sclerosis Hits The Slopes

 

Vertical Express for MS (Can Do Multiple Sclerosis)Vertical Express for Can Do MS, the only national event series that combines skiing and fundraising to empower people with multiple sclerosis (MS), kicks off Feb. 6 with seven ski resort events across the country. This event supports lifestyle empowerment programs for people with MS and their support partners. 

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Pacific Northwest Mountains Feel The Snowy Love; New Terrain Opening Daily

Summit at SnoqualmieA phalanx of snow storms continues to course off the Pacific and dump double-digit depths on the Cascades and environs.

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Pacific Northwest Puts Low-Snow Season Behind Them With Modest Upgrades

49 Degrees North powderIt’s no secret that last season was difficult for ski and snowboard operations in the Pacific Northwest, given a record low in snowfall and persistent above-freezing temperatures into midseason.

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Western Resorts Dodge Wildfires So Far; Firefighters Getting Upper Hand At SoCal's Big Bear

Big Bear firesMore than a hundred wildfires in the mountains of the moisture-starved Pacific Coast have yet to cause any damage to ski and snowboard resorts, although a small fire near Snow Summit and Bear Mountain forced temporary evacuations and closures around the Southern California slopes.

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Better-Late-Than-Never Snows In Far West While Northern New England Keeps On Going

Wildcat spring skiingBits and pieces of winter will sprinkle across the country for the next week, with Front Range Colorado getting the bulk of new stuff while New England’s winter weather gods just don’t seem to want to let go.

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Storms Clear Out Of The West; Leave Sun-Splashed Spring Skiing In Wake

Wolf CreekA couple of weeks of serious storms brought 100 inches to Wolf Creek and a welcome three feet to the Tahoe area. But they are done with, and it appears that spring skiing will be the order of the day for the near future.

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Late-Season Deals Blossom To Entice Skiers, Riders On West Coast, Despite Low Snow Totals

Mt. Bachelor halfpipeMany resorts along the West Coast are sweetening ticket and lodging deals to entice skiers and snowboarders into the mountains. The deals are prompted by a winter season that hasn’t come close to even delivering an average snowfall. 

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Powder Days In Southern Rockies To Continue; Colder Temps May Help in PNW, California

Powder Day at Taos Ski ValleyThe southern Rockies got the bulk of this latest snow blast, and snow is expected to continue – in varying degrees of intensity – into next week in Colorado and Utah. Skiers and snowboarders at other areas of the West are still looking longingly to the skies.

 

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Any Alpine Or XC Season Passholder Can Ski Free For A Day At Washington's Methow Trails

Methow ValleyNews stories recently reported that skiers are fleeing areas that have bad snow conditions in search of snow covered regions. Methow Trailsin eastern Washington, is offering a deal to encourage snow sports enthusiasts to come and discover the beautiful Northwest. Methow Valley is inviting season pass holders from any alpine or Nordic ski area in North America to join them for a day on the trails for free. 

 

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