November was a month that favored Tahoe with multiple storms and many feet of snow while Colorado was left with only one significant storm and variable temperatures. The good news is that the weather does not play favorites and it looks like things are going to even out over the coming weeks.
A problem with the previous storm track was that it was pretty warm. When storms originate over the Pacific Ocean west of California, they make landfall with tons of moisture but little cold air. This means that snow levels are above many base areas, so despite the hefty snow amounts at higher elevations, things could be a little better. Another problem with the previous storm track was that it largely missed Colorado. That’s another no bueno.
The good news is that a new storm will take shape and it’ll bring colder air to much of the country, including Colorado. Storms in this new weather pattern will originate further north, which means colder and fluffier snow. And while this next week will generally favor snow only for Colorado, the longer-range forecasts are hinting that a flatter storm track could evolve into the third week of December which would mean storms for both California and Colorado.
But first thing’s first – let’s talk about this weekend’s storm. While a few light snow showers could fall over the Colorado resorts on Thursday, Thursday night, Friday, and Friday night, the main event won’t arrive until late Saturday afternoon. A cold front will move in from the northwest and usher in heavy snow and colder temperatures on Saturday night. If things come together just right, about 4-8 inches should fall at most of the Colorado resorts Saturday night and it’ll feel a lot more like a (chilly) winter day on Sunday.
I hope you’re as excited for the snow as I am!
Meteorologist Joel Gratz is the founder and CEO of opensnow.com and is based in Boulder, Colo.