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I finally got another pink lenticular cloud picture at sunset. I did not get to my favorite spot for viewing the mountains with this. As you can imagine, the really nice orange and pink colors only last for a few mintues. There are a couple of little weird jet contrails in there.

As for the weather, I am beginning to think this is a bad winter. Seriously, I need some fantasy storms to track at some point in time, even if it turns out to be a couple of 2" type snowfalls in reality.

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23 hours ago, BlizzardWx said:

Models trending up for the storm on Sunday for me. Looks like 2-4" at my house now. Another storm Monday but I will miss it at AMS.

 Hey good to hear that hope you get some good snow.  I also hope the CO mountains get in on some snow.  As far as the front range we’re likely to just get windstorms out of it.  I just watered the plants in my yard today for the second time this season, and probably will have to again in a couple of weeks.  Anything else I put in will be cactus and rocks ;-)

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Had snow on the ground in my backyard for 11 days, it melted with the tiny bit of 40F rain we had yesterday.

The GFS has some pretty good storms for the West overall for the next week, which is a bit odd given that phase 8 of the MJO tends to be dry in January for the West. Phase 7 is wet though, so maybe everything is just lagging a bit since we only spent a single day in phase seven.

zJW2i9M.png

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14 hours ago, raindancewx said:

Had snow on the ground in my backyard for 11 days, it melted with the tiny bit of 40F rain we had yesterday.

The GFS has some pretty good storms for the West overall for the next week, which is a bit odd given that phase 8 of the MJO tends to be dry in January for the West. Phase 7 is wet though, so maybe everything is just lagging a bit since we only spent a single day in phase seven.

zJW2i9M.png

Thanks for your update and good to hear your region is doing well with storms.  The CO front range only manages to get wind out of these storms due to the inability to get any semblance of upslope flow.  It seems the front range upslope phenomenon continues to be a casualty of climate change :-(.

I had been thinking Denver and the northern front range would do well to reach 30" of snow this season.  Due to the predominant split flow and lack of any strong storms in our region, I'm thinking we'd be fortunate to reach 20" this season.  If/when the pattern changes more favorably, we'll probably be past the point where it is reliably cold enough for snow - but at this point I would be grateful for any form of precip....

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Least Denver snow for a season was 21.3" in 1888-9 which isn't too hard to beat- heck, two storms after Easter could get us there. Still a long ways to go. But this is so incredibly boring/frustrating. Even the 21.8" two years ago had us with more by now.

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This is a pet theory of mine, need to see how the more meaningful things do, like SST changes, storms tracks, etc, but the El Nino years after the Gulf Coast is hit by a major hurricane do have some tendency to see incredible cold March weather in our part of the world. I'm thinking specifically of 1941-42, 1957-58, 1965-66, 1969-70, 2004-05. The ESRL stuff is down, but you have to imagine the composite of the five years is like -5F centered on Western Nebraska or somewhere thereabout. I ran some numbers here, and the precipitation composite for "snowiest month" is indicating March, in a pretty strong way locally. My top three precipitation matches for July-Dec in the past 100 years are 1969-70, 1974-75, and 1998-99, all of which have a lot of rain and heavy snow in March.

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If you wanted an optimistic signal for the West, this is the relationship between total snow in Boston from 10/1-1/8 in El Nino years, and total snow in Albuquerque. The Boston observers reported T snow today for their 5 pm update, so Boston is only at 0.2" through 1/8. You can see that is fairly similar to a lot of the winters that ended up very snowy out here. Finishing up at 5.3", where we are now, would be a pretty huge outlier on the image (although I don't expect 20 inches either).

01MmlvO.png

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On 1/5/2019 at 1:04 PM, finnster said:

 Hey good to hear that hope you get some good snow.  I also hope the CO mountains get in on some snow.  As far as the front range we’re likely to just get windstorms out of it.  I just watered the plants in my yard today for the second time this season, and probably will have to again in a couple of weeks.  Anything else I put in will be cactus and rocks ;-)

Hope it works out for you soon too. Everything is melting away it looks like with no prospects for anything other than maybe a stray inch here or there coming up. You guys need it worse than I do though. 

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On 1/8/2019 at 9:26 AM, finnster said:

 

 Due to the predominant split flow and lack of any strong storms in our region, I'm thinking we'd be fortunate to reach 20" this season.  If/when the pattern changes more favorably, we'll probably be past the point where it is reliably cold enough for snow - but at this point I would be grateful for any form of precip....

I just reviewed some of the synoptics for December. Our best 500mb troughs were Dec 1-4 and Dec 25-31.  We were just so unlucky to have gotten so little snow in the Dec 25-31 time frame.  One teleconnection of interest: the PNA index has been positive since Nov 18th, with few days with a zero index. So in general, the big troughs have been in the Gulf of Alaska with mainly ridges in the northern Rockies.

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Storms seem to more commonly stay to the South when the AMO is neutral or cold, I think that's probably the major difference between 2018 and 2006 for late Dec, CPC was using 2006 in their 6-10 and 8-14 outlooks as analogs for many time frames, but CO missed out on most of it, with NM, TX and MX doing fairly well, and the AMO -0.120 or so in Nov before the shutdown took out ESRL.

If you look at temps in NM, after Christmas to early January, they are very similar to 2006-07 with the snows holding down highs for a pretty long time. Even with today and yesterday in the upper 40s we're still running with a monthly high of ~40F. 

All that being said, if we cycle through this when temps are warmer, I could see NM & CO doing very well for cold and snow in March.

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2 hours ago, Chinook said:

I just reviewed some of the synoptics for December. Our best 500mb troughs were Dec 1-4 and Dec 25-31.  We were just so unlucky to have gotten so little snow in the Dec 25-31 time frame.  One teleconnection of interest: the PNA index has been positive since Nov 18th, with few days with a zero index. So in general, the big troughs have been in the Gulf of Alaska with mainly ridges in the northern Rockies.

The ridiculously persistently positive PNA has surely been part of our problem in the CO Front Range lately. But why has it been so persistent? I ask in part to try to figure out what to root for in the coming months (like perhaps the erosion of the North Pacific warm blob?).

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There’s a *chance* of an ok snow event around Denver this Friday according to some models like the NAM. Probably won’t pan out for various reasons such as the likely lack of sustained moderate or better upslope (big surprise) but at least it’s something interesting to watch for a little while.

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While the 06z NAM was very excited about snow in Denver, it's most likely that 1-3" of snow happens tomorrow for the metro areas. A couple of days ago, the GFS had really pretty low snow for Colorado out of this system, but it actually might be a pretty reasonable storm for the mountains and 1-3" for most of the population.

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30 minutes ago, Chinook said:

While the 06z NAM was very excited about snow in Denver, it's most likely that 1-3" of snow happens tomorrow for the metro areas. A couple of days ago, the GFS had really pretty low snow for Colorado out of this system, but it actually might be a pretty reasonable storm for the mountains and 1-3" for most of the population.

The 12z gfs looked ok and apparently the Euro looks decent as well. For now. This could easily change. But for now I think this is looking like a heavier snow event than 1-3”, though relatively warm temps paired with daytime snowfall may limit accumulation, especially below about 5500’.

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Looking like we'll get a wet snow event here Sat Night into Sun Morning (probably a 10 pm to 10 am event).

The AMO seems to control heavy snow in Jan/Dec here - only one January topped 4 inches from 1946-47 to 1960-61, only one January topped 4 inches from 1997-98 to 2013-14, so if we get to 5-6" in January, most since January 1995 when the AMO flipped - might be time to start looking hard at the AMO beginning to flip phases for 20-30 years. It was certainly much snowier in January after 1960-61 when the AMO began to rapidly cool off for a while

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Left my house in western Lakewood near Green Mountain at about 3:00 for the mountains. There was about 5” of snow then. Surely there’s more now. Elevation made a huge difference for this system. The cutoff between meh and decent snow seemed to be about 5500’. Things seem to have turned out well above 6000’. My backyard = about 5900’. The snow depth was pretty impressive just a few hundred feet up the hill from me (at the highest point of the Green Mtn neighborhood). This was a lot like the April storms I’ve seen.

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My area got 0.36" of rain. To date, this has been the largest amount of rain that I've seen in Fort Collins/Loveland in the months of Dec-Feb. It never bothered to change to snow. Dew points were above 32 here.

We can hope this storm delivers snow to the Front Range:

cNRzdGd.png

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It's still early, but I had the NE coastal plain with relatively low snow, high snow downwind of the Great Lakes in NY, and higher than normal snow in the Rockies and Plains. That seems at least broadly correct, although it has snowed more in NC/VA than I expected. The early snow SE, and ice storms in the NE more or less verified in November, as did the Plains blizzards in November. The areas of the NE I had below normal have been so far too, despite the fast start in November.

fw80KTc.png

It's not perfect, but for 10/6, it seems to be doing fairly well so far. 

 

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It's kind of amusing to me that Denver has been in the 60s this month, as has Boston, but Albuquerque has yet to hit 50F since 2019 started. We'll get there this week in all likelihood, certainly by the end of the month, but its already the deepest into the year without hitting 50F here since January 1977...which is one of my analogs. With the rains/snows/clouds and cold lows it just doesn't warm up easily here. 

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18 hours ago, raindancewx said:

It's kind of amusing to me that Denver has been in the 60s this month, as has Boston, but Albuquerque has yet to hit 50F since 2019 started. We'll get there this week in all likelihood, certainly by the end of the month, but its already the deepest into the year without hitting 50F here since January 1977...which is one of my analogs. With the rains/snows/clouds and cold lows it just doesn't warm up easily here. 

January 1977 sends a chill through me. This month was Ohio's coldest month, since records have been kept (roughly since 1870).

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3 hours ago, Chinook said:

hey this popped up quick, seemingly a max of 26-29" for high elevations

 

Wow, that's one hell of a gradient. Wall of continuous heavy snow as soon as you get close to the Divide, nothing at all east of there. Something just looks too weird about that to believe. I'm guessing it's more likely that either it'll be more patchy, or perhaps (less likely) some more will leak over than WPC says.

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