Recurring Ridge

There is a recurring Ridge that shows up at the same time every cycle. I bring this up because it is a day and a half early. The storms have generally been, on average, a half a day early. So this isn’t too out of the ordinary but we will keep an eye on it. This is usually an active part of the pattern, but with the weakening jetstream, it’s beginning to look more like it did in cycle 1 and cycle 0 (cycle 0 is the transformation from last years pattern)–weak.

The next Pattern storm predicted is for Crystal Mountain on April 2-3rd, that storm looks like it’s going to miss north with the retreating jet stream indicated by the blue line. Stay tuned.

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Those of you who live in the Tahoe area and follow Bryan Allegretto on OpenSnow know that I listed a few “chance” dates in the comments section a few weeks ago before model range. The second date, April 7-8, looks likely. This method, Wave Theory, as Mike Korotkin described on The Flakes Podcast, is really incredible. I don’t understand how it works. I have heard scientist try to describe what they think happens–the polar regions get covered in snow and the north pole goes into perpetual darkness until spring. Triggering some mechanism that anchors troughs in permanent positions until summer. The atmospheric flow follows those anchors and repeats. How? I sure don’t know! I’m sopping up as much knowledge as I can to better understand this phenomenon. All I know is it works.

So back to Tahoe. The first chance is a “Bowling Ball” event, as Bryan describes it, is scheduled for April 7-8th. A bowling ball is a cut-off low that spins of the coast until it gets sucked into the flow of the Jetstream. I had seen these cut-off lows in the early setup of this seasons Pattern so I thought I could go back through the data and predict one. I picked a couple of likely dates, according to the Pattern, and chose Feb 27th. April 7-8th was another likely date to pick a cut-off low, but I chose the 27th and it happened within 1.5 days of said prediction. I couldn’t get Bryan to bite on the challenge.

Below is the projected snowfall as of today–still a long ways off. I will keep monitoring the incoming system as it approaches.

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Powder Alert

Our storm that is predicted for Crystal Mountain (#52) on March 30th is looking like a powerful storm. It looks like it is arriving a half a day early. This storm was predicted on February 21st, 37 days in advance. Check out the 5oomb projected energy below.

Now let’s take a look at the projected 24 hour snowfall total. This image is valid at 18Z Monday the 29th. The “z” stands for Zulu time so you add 7 hours for Pacific Daylight Time (PDT), or 1 a.m. on the 30th. 

This would be a good storm to chase because you could fly in to Seattle Monday and get to the mountain for first chair Tuesday. They have a reservation system at Crystal and the weekends have been sold out for months.  
One positive thing about the pandemic is the incredibly cheap flights that you can get last minute. Check out this flight on Southwest from Denver round-trip. You could book this today!

Finally, here’s a couple of shots of my last trip to Crystal Mountain Resort. We found our car buried in the parking lot, it was pretty dicey travel the night before, I would suggest a four-wheel-drive and not a van! Crystal is a cool mountain because there is a very limited number of on mountain places to stay. But, during the week there will be no problem finding a place. So just saying, if you want to go…

Alta Crystal Resort
Crystal Mountain Resort

Thank you for taking a few minutes to read the blog, if you have any questions feel free to submit it in the comments below or shoot me an email to Mike@FutureSnow.CO

Colorado’s Up

The present storm is directly related to the pattern. It just hits Squaw (Tahoe) which was predicted by FutureSnow 54 days ago on January 26. There will be a couple of good systems coming through this week. The storms predicted for the 26th and 27th, 61 days ago, is right on schedule. That storm will be followed by another one the 26-27th. We just had the equinox to welcome spring in with a much higher sun angle. We still gain about 2 1/2 minutes of daylight a day. The jetstream is weakening and beginning to reseed to the north. It will take the storms further north and reduce the width of the “pattern path”.
Looking at the predictions page for the end of March, you see a lot of dates for northern storms, this isn’t a coincidence with the receding jetstream. When I made the spring predictions on February 21, I was guessing that this would be the correct bet. That does not mean that the storms will not drop down and hit Tahoe, Utah, and Colorado. The stronger storms, like the co-signature storms, are big enough to come through. We could miss every prediction for the rest of the year, our point would still be made, this system is real and it works.
Looking at the long range models the temperatures do not look favorable into April. Hopefully the models are wrong and will get a turnaround. Stay tuned. Thank you for spending a few minutes reading the blog.

Part 2 CoSig

This year we have two main storm systems that I call co-signature storms. They are 13 days apart and have hit every cycle. Part two of the cosignature storm begins on March 26 for Colorado. Below is the two day snowfall total valid for Sunday the 28th. This kicks off the second active part of the pattern towards the end of cycle 4.

The next sequence of photos represent the energy and vorticity of the 500mb chart. Noticed the similarities and differences. Where the ridges are as well as the troughs. Teleconnections and the values that those teleconnections, positive or negative, affect the shape and energy.

Below is the projected GFS for the 27th. Again, look at the similarities and differences. Most of the teleconnections this cycle are positive, the AO, AAO, NAO, and we are still in a moderate La Niña. The jetstream is beginning to weaken and will eventually recede north.

I was hopeful the storm would be strong enough to include the Tahoe region, but it’s not looking good. The weakening jetstream looks like it’s going to keep the storm north, like it did in cycle 1.
Thanks for spending a few minutes reading the blog and as always if you have any questions submit them in the comment section or shoot me an email to

92% 30/34

It has been a great first season for Future Snow. We are presently 92% accurate beyond model range. We have hacked the weather and long range forecasting will never be the same. Now you will be able to plan a ski or snowboard trip months in advance and be confident you will have fresh snow. This lass storm that hit Colorado was officially 43 days in advance, but if you saw my post on the Colorado Daily Snow Jan 10th it was more than 2 months in advance.

Eldora off the chart!

Thanks for making FutureSnow a success and as always if you have any questions please ask in the comments below or send me an email to Mike@FutureSnow.CO.

Video Blog

Well this is a first for FutureSnow, a video blog today. It is a little rough around the edges, I will work out the kinks in future productions, but I wanted to show you the repeating pattern from a time-lapse perspective. Watch the systems repeat in the same spots over and over.

Back in Black

After some work analyzing the pattern I am returning to the original predictions from the prediction grid and removing the red updated dates. There were a couple of storms that came in early and I failed to recognize the pattern sped up and not the cycle. Adding the 2 days was clearly an overreaction and although the explanation was valid, it was not to the extent of 2 days. My bad, this has been an learning process and we are getting the kinks out this first season. I have also added a direct menu button at the top of the browser to access the chart more easily.

Tahoe’s Up, Alta on Deck

The dry or boring part of the pattern it’s coming to a close and finally we’re moving into the active part again. The low pressure system spinning off the coast is headed towards Tahoe and will arrive overnight Tuesday. This should be a good kick-off to the active pattern and should bring double digits at least along the crest. Once the storm passes it heads towards Alta, right on time. Below is the energy and vorticity GFS.

As the low continues to move east, Washington and Oregon Resorts will get snow from the backside of the Low/Northwest flow. The system has occurred every cycle. With the last couple of cycles being stronger and affecting a larger path. The genesis of this system was way back in August when the new pattern was in its infancy.
Colorado is next with snow snow beginning on the 11th, right on time (predicted Jan 26th). Because of the position of the low, this could be the biggest storm that Colorado has all season. It’s been a down year because of the La Niña pattern, but I expect to finish strong in March and April to end the season at, or above average, like I predicted back in December.
The picture below is the next storm is spinning off the BC coast. That is the next system that’s going to affect Banff Lake Louise, Big Sky and Jackson Hole. This prediction was made on Feb 3rd.

4th Repeating Storm

We are entering the active phase of the pattern with Saturday nights Storm beginning at the Lake Tahoe region. Every cycle there are a different lineup of forces (AO, NAO, MJO, ENSO, etc.). Those differences relate to the outcome shown on the 500mb charts. Let’s look at those charts of this years La Niña dominant pattern.
45-46 day pattern

Projected 500mb Z Vort

You can see that these charts have a similar look to them. The differences, again, are the strength of the different teleconnections. All of these snapshots have a second round of energy following the first round come with the exception of the October snapshot. The pattern was still developing in October. Tomorrow will get into the next trough that sets up 13 days after this one.