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Tahoe is Back, More Snow for Utah and Colorado

By January 29, 2023January 31st, 2023No Comments


Daily Snow Stakes

GFS Surface Chart 

All Snow Version

Current System, GFS 500 mb Charts Last 4 Cycles

Pattern Discussion (from Yesterday)

Looking at the four charts above, you can see the similarities between the cycles.  This time through, the energy will get cutoff from the flow, which is similar to what happened in cycle two. Looking at the charts side by side, you can see how the pattern varies from cycle to cycle due to the teleconnections.  Also, the time of year adds subtle differences in the outcome.  I expect that in next cycle, it will be at its strongest strength and look like the third chart.  

Let’s take a look at where we are with current snowpack.  This is a chart from the National Snow and Ice Data Center.

We are on the upper end of the interquartile range.  I had to look interquartile up, I always called it the mid-spread in back in the day, but interquartile sounds good, so I’m going with it.  Let’s make it the “word of the day”–try to work it into conversation.  “You know Bill, I was looking at the Chief’s offence vs Cincy’s defense, over the last 3 games they met, did you know the interquartile average favors KC”?

Sorry, back on track now.  As the active pattern cranks back up, so should the needle on the chart.  The MJO (Madden Jullian Oscillation) is beginning to move in the right direction for enhancing precipitation in mid-February.  Even if the MJO doesn’t come through, there will still be good storms through February 26th, with the highest probability of strong storms between the 10-26th.  

LR Prediction Forecast Chart (Correction)

I made a mistake talking about the current storms.  I said that storm 41,42, and 43 yesterday and meant 38, 39, and 40.  I have two spreadsheets, one public, one private, with more storms listed on the private.  I was simply looking at the wrong spreadsheet–thank you Cladio S from Seattle for bringing this to my attention!  

Last night Storm 38 came through and outperformed last cycle.  You can see the snow stakes below from last cycle.  Now we get to the secondary wave which is storms 39 and 40. Those storms reach Utah and Colorado Sunday and are about 12hours ahead of schedule.

Storm History

The last time these two waves came through we had primarily rain for the first wave in the PNW followed by snow for the second wave.  Mt Hood was the winner with 6 snow and 2 inches of rain, Whistler 5, Crystel 4, and Mt Bachelor 5.  In Utah, Alta had 2-day totals of 8, While in Colorado, a rare time where the state has outperformed Utah, with Breckenridge 14, Beaver Creek 13, Steamboat 11, Vail 9, Wolf Creek and Aspen 7.  Also, a rare spotting of Santa before Christmas.  





Snow for the northern resorts Steamboat, Bluebird (backcountry) and Winter Park, while the other northern and central resorts have the possibility of scattered snow showers.  Temperatures will be in the mid to upper 20-s with light to moderate winds.  The snow in the northern mountains will gradually move south, after most likely after the resorts close, bringing snow to the central ranges tonight and Monday, then finally reaching the southern mountains by Tuesday.


Snow with moderate winds between 10-20, with 30 mph gusts.  The heaviest snow will still be in this year’s sweet spot, Steamboat, but most mountains will see a good refresh.  Grand Junctions nearby resort, Powderhorn, gets in on the action tomorrow with likely 2-3 inches before the lifts start turning and more throughout the day. 

Not much doing for the San Juans, with the exception of Wolf Creek where winds and moisture are favorable for some decent totals.  Possibly a good time to ride the storm, with 5-10 likely throughout the day.


Snow continues Monday where we will see good numbers in the northern and central mountains.  Temperatures will be in the mid to upper 20’s with moderate winds early and light winds in the afternoon as the front passes.  Tuesday the system moves out of the northern and central ranges and enters the San Juans.  It’s a little early to give totals but it looks like 2-4 to 3-5 for Silverton and Telluride, with another 2-4 for Wolf Creek.




Cold and snow.  Wind chills will be in the single digits with moderate winds between 10-15 mph.  The system moves out tomorrow night.  


Scattered snow showers possible before noon then partly sunny with temperatures in the low teens with light winds.  Wind chills in the single digits.


Next System on Friday


Lake Tahoe 

Tahoe gets back in on the action early today, as a storm moves into the Tahoe basin.  This will begin the active period and will have storms rolling in about every 4-5 days with a pretty large storm expected for Presidents Day weekend (16th), and another good storm on the 20th.

Temperatures will be in the mid 20’s with moderate winds 10-15 mph.  

Thank you for reading the blog, as always, if you have any questions, or need personalized info for trip forecasts, please email me at

Long-Range Forecast Predictions thru March 

Forecasted Areas

Pacific Northwest Cascade Mountains

Crystal MountainMount Hood MeadowsTimberline49 Degrees North,  BachelorMt Baker,

Lake Tahoe Sierra Mountains

HeavenlyPalisades TahoeKirkwoodDodge RidgeDonner Ski Ranch

Utah Wasatch Mountains

AltaPark CityDeer ValleyBrightonSnowbirdBrian Head

Colorado Rocky Mountains

AspenAspen HighlandsSnowmassVailBeaver Creek,  Winter ParkKeystoneArapahoe BasinBreckenridgeCopper MountainPowderhornSki CooperTellurideCrested ButteSilvertonWolf CreekEldoraLoveland

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