A big storm is barreling into the western US late this week and it’s heading east toward Colorado, ever so slowly. This storm dropped 6-10 inches of snow on Tahoe which served to freshen up the slopes that have stayed in good condition with the recent streak of colder air.
The storm will push east toward Colorado on Thursday night and Friday and it should make for a snowy day for all the Colorado resorts. While little snow will fall Thursday night, the cold front will push through during the morning hours on Friday and this will induce a quick shot of heavy snow followed by pulsating snow showers through the rest of the day. Total snowfall on Friday into Friday night will range from 3-6” to 4-8”, and if things work out just a little better, double digits is not out of the question.
On Saturday and beyond, a dome of very cold air will cover the western half of the US, which should keep snow conditions good while also ensuring that skiers and riders take frequent breaks to warm up. Of course we’d like it to be snowing as well as cold, but if we can’t have both, at least we can rely on the cold air and low January sun angle to limit the melting of snow to a minimum.
There are signs that the west will return to stormier weather later in January, but that’s still over 10 days away so I’ll wait to give a forecast until my confidence in the models grows. Until then, enjoy the snow!
Meteorologist Joel Gratz is the founder and CEO of opensnow.com and is based in Boulder, Colo.