Monday, October 12, 2015

The Fall Break Forecast

This week is fall break at the University of Utah.  Several years ago, the students voted to have a full week fall break and each year I thank them for doing so as October is a wonderful month in the Intermountain West.

The forecast for fall break week looks pretty good statewide through at least Wednesday.  There is a weak short-wave trough forecast to flirt with the southwest later in the week, as illustrated by the GFS forecast for 1200 UTC (0600 MDT) Friday.  

The timing and strength of this trough remain somewhat uncertain and it's main impact will probably be to increase the threat of showers and thunderstorms, especially in southern Utah.  Check forecasts in a couple of days, especially if you are considering canyoneering in the south later this week or over the weekend.  

If we look out into the extended, some ensemble members are hinting at the possibility of some precipitation  next weekend or early next week.  For instance, if we look at the North American Ensemble Forecast System (NAEFS) plumes for Alta, we see several members calling for precipitation and a bit of high elevation snow on Sunday.  

Of course other ensemble members are drier (you can't see the "no precip" members in those plume diagrams).  Thus, we'll have to see how things look in a few days.

Park City Talk

I'll be giving a talk on my book Secrets of the Greatest Snow on Earth at the Park City Friends of the Library author luncheon on Thursday October 22nd.   The luncheon is at the Park City Marriott, 1895 Sidewinder Drive.  Doors open at 11 am and tickets are available for $36 at the Park City Library.


  1. The weak trough forecast to affect us later this week (currently a large closed low off the Baja Peninsula) is the same system that brought rain and thunderstorms to the southwestern U.S. last week. It looped around the ridge, retrograding across the northwestern regions of Mexico and now it is back for a second round.

  2. Nothing to do with the above forecast, but I thought that you would be interested in this story.

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