8 p.m. Update:
Snow levels hovered around lake level all day with not much accumulation at lake level and lots of accumulation from 6500 feet and up. In the last few hours here this evening some warmer air has mixed in ahead of the next strong wave. The snow levels are up around 7000 ft. right now. Once the heavier precip moves in they should drop back down to 6500 ft. or lower. Tonight’s snowfall forecast at lake level is shot again. Above 7000 ft. on the resorts it is not with another 12-24 inches overnight and again tomorrow.
Tomorrow the cold front swings through during the day and snow levels should no longer be an issue the rest of the week. Heavy snow will fall to lake level and below by tomorrow afternoon through Monday with plenty of significant accumulation left for the folks at lake level. I got out on the mountain today and it was dumping all day down to the base. Most snow I can ever remember seeing at the summit this early in the season. See you in the morning. BA
From This Morning:
Resort totals are posted and the resorts got theirs in the past 24 hours. Anywhere from 18 inches at lower elevation resorts like Boreal & Homewood with over 2 feet on the rest of the resorts. Sugarbowl got hit hardest as usual with 38 inches on top. Right on track with the 2-3 foot forecast by this morning for the resorts, and we are just getting started.
Interesting storm last night at lake level. The cold dense air in place in the Basin was mixed out a little early in South Lake around 6 p.m. and the snow mixed with rain at 36 degrees. Meanwhile Truckee was snowing at 28 degrees and Reno was snowing at 30 degrees. The cold air held on the longest in Reno and this mornings snowfall reports from readers is already a little higher from Reno with the NW getting 11 inches before the change to rain after midnight. Snow levels have hovered right around 6500 ft. most of the night into this morning, with the accumulating snows staying above that. At 5 a.m. this morning it was slush flaking in Truckee at 35 degrees and then all snow once you climbed to about 6500 ft. The cold front is getting closer and the colder air should filter in and drop snow levels back to lake level by noon. Roads are not that bad this morning as the temps above freezing have made them just slushy or wet.
Don’t let your guard down, especially at lake level as one of the strongest 24 hour storms in about 3 years prepares to move in tonight. Precip will be lighter today ahead of the storm tonight. After snow levels drop to lake level today we could see 3-6 inches accumulate by evening. Above 7000 ft. we should see another 12-18 inches by this evening. Then tonight a strong wave moves in and it dumps. Should see another 18-24 inches tonight and then 18-24 more tomorrow above 7000 ft. for a 24 hour total of 3-4 feet. It could be the biggest 24 hour total since January 3rd-4th 2008. At lake level 6-12 inches tonight & another 6-12 inches tomorrow. This is a little low only because some models suggest a brief mix to rain again up to 6500 ft. in the early morning hours before going back to snow Sunday morning. Several more inches should finish us off Sunday night for 48 hour snowfall totals of 4-6 feet above 7000 ft. and 1-3 feet at lake level by Monday morning. At lake level the 1 foot is low end East side of the lake and East of Truckee, and the high end is West side of the lake, West side of Truckee, and above 6200 ft. The 6+ feet is along the Western crest above 8,000 ft.
On Monday the snow levels are well below lake level and snow showers should continue with several more inches expected. Then things get a little more confusing as the trough off the coast digs really deep on Tuesday. Models are split on weather we have a break on Tuesday because the subtropical jetstream pulls away from the Polar Jetstream and moves the precip South of us, or they stay merged and the moisture is pulled back North for more heavy snowfall. Today let’s go in the middle and say it stays colder with snow levels below lake level and light snow Tuesday before the cold front swing through with heavier snow on Wednesday. With that solution we are looking at 2-3 more feet instead of the doubling down on the 3-6 feet from this weekend that was the trend a couple days ago. Will have to watch this closely because it will make a big difference on the amount of snow we receive.
We look to dry out starting on Thursday and lasting into Saturday. That will provide much better driving conditions and we should see massive amounts of people come up for Christmas weekend and the incredible skiing conditions. Looks like a colder storm is still on tap for Sunday that could bring a foot or more to the resorts. By the end of the month and into the new year the ridge in the Pacific may set up around 150-160w which is our ideal location for colder storms to drop in from the North. Stay tuned……….BA
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