Thursday, December 22, 2011

Snomageddon Over, What Next?

We got the anticipated freshening of snow in the Cottonwoods yesterday and last night.  Bruce Tremper's advisory on the Utah Avalanche Center site sums it up well: "New snow amounts are mostly 2-5 inches. A couple automated stations have reported 7 inches but I suspect wind drifting."  The Alta-Collins site has what we'll call using football ling, a short 6" or a long 5".

I'll jokingly call this event Snomageddon because it may have produced the largest 24-hour snowfall this month based on a quick look at the Alta snowfall history.  Thusfar, the largest 24-hour total reported on that site this month is 4.5", so we may have topped it depending on what they use for their 24-hour period.

So, we remain desperate, what are the prospects for the future?  Let's start with Christmas Day.  Unfortunately, there's no hope for a white Christmas in the Salt Lake Valley.  You'll need to go to the mountains for holiday sledding or skiing.  It will, however, be a beautiful day (other than some valley haze) as we'll be under the influence of a high amplitude ridge.

GFS Forecast Valid 0500 MST Christmas Day
There is some hope for later in Christmas week.  The past couple of days the models have been hinting at a weakening of the split flow with a more progressive (i.e., stronger westerly flow) pattern over the western United States.  The latest GFS teases us by keeping the main storm track just to our north, but it is close enough that we could get some action from a couple of storms.

GFS forecast valid 1100 MST 27 Dec 2011
GFS forecast valid 1700 MST 28 Dec 2011 
The first event is presently a brush-by, whereas the 2nd event has more potential.  That being said, these are long range forecasts, prone to errors in amplitude and timing, so we'll need to see how things come together the next few days.  I hate to say it yet again, but keep your fingers crossed.

1 comment:

  1. Jim, just wanted you to know there are a bunch of people following your blog. Great info. wish you could control the weather and bring in some snow.