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Mountain West Discussion- cool season '23-24


mayjawintastawm
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Most of us have now seen our first freeze of the season, and mountaintops are white for the foreseeable future (we hope!) Leaves are starting to look good in the Denver Metro, about a week behind schedule. The eclipse was very cool yesterday, though I couldn't get any pics that are good. Supposed to be 80 in Denver midweek. El Nino, what bring you?

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4 hours ago, mayjawintastawm said:

The eclipse was very cool yesterday, though I couldn't get any pics that are good.

Regarding the solar eclipse yesterday (10/14), this is from a San Antonio, TX, NWS discussion just afterward (1:52PM):

“HOPEFULLY MANY OF YOU WERE ABLE TO SEE THE ECLIPSE NEAR THE PEAK OBSCURATION TIME. TEMPERATURES CURRENTLY RANGE FROM THE MIDDLE 60S TO LOWER 70S AND LOCATIONS CLOSER TO THE TOTAL ANNULARITY ACTUALLY DROPPED ABOUT 2-5 DEGREES WITH THE PEAK OBSCURATION.”

 One can get a good idea of the cooling influence of the eclipse by looking at Austin’s hourlies from yesterday since they had near full sunshine and no front coming through. The partial started at 10:24AM, peak obscuration (nearly 90%) was at 11:54AM, and the partial ended at 1:32PM. Note the steady rise 8-10AM, followed by a slowing of the warming at 11AM once ~1/2 hour into partial, a cooling of 3F 11AM-noon when going from some partial to the near 90% obscuration peak, the most rapid hourly warming noon-1PM when going from peak to losing most of the obscuration, and then steady warming through 4PM after the eclipse ended:

8AM: AUSTIN/BERGSTM PTCLDY 62 41 46 N14

9AM: AUSTIN/BERGSTM MOSUNNY 64 41 42 N16

10AM: AUSTIN/BERGSTM MOSUNNY 67 40 37 N20G29

11AM: AUSTIN/BERGSTM MOSUNNY 68 41 37 N14

Noon: AUSTIN/BERGSTM MOSUNNY 65 41 41 N12

1PM: AUSTIN/BERGSTM MOSUNNY 70 40 33 N16

2PM: AUSTIN/BERGSTM MOSUNNY 74 41 30 N15

3PM: AUSTIN/BERGSTM MOSUNNY 76 39 26 N14G22

4PM: AUSTIN/BERGSTM MOSUNNY 78 39 24 N13

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6 hours ago, smokeybandit said:

Solar radiation data from my weather station.   Pretty obvious where the eclipse is, with some clouds here and there messing with the pretty curve.

 

image.png.d8bf930b49c4554f6c3b954ab6d1fe57.png

I have a new station and need to figure out how to look at those data. Nice! Where I was (probably 10-12 miles from you), there were also some patchy clouds until about 10:15 which probably messed things up a bit, but after that time skies were clear till the end of the eclipse.

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17 hours ago, Chinook said:

Hey Mayja, remember this 2021 dual-metro snowstorm? It somehow failed to drop heavier snows over the Palmer Divide but successfully dropped over 6" at Colorado Springs.

 

We got just under a foot with that one, though SWE was vanishingly small. A couple weeks later we got a solid 22 inches. That was a good period in there, I think we got somewhere around 45" from mid-Feb to mid-March.

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19 hours ago, Chinook said:

I was going to try to discuss the upcoming pattern change, but I have some problems. The  GFS ensembles and ECMWF ensembles don't even really agree as to the overall pattern at 6-7 days. ECMWF does not drop the freezing air into northern Colorado on Oct 26.

When in doubt, seems like we go with persistence... not putting the shorts away or the snow tires on anytime soon. Our neighbors have a resurgence of ripe tomatoes.

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Here is the pattern change coming up. And even in saying this, the GFS and ECMWF have quite different temps for northern Colorado on Oct 26. Nevertheless, the colder air will be in the Northwest and it will move into Colorado at some point. It looks like the models have just light snow for the mountains with the overall system.

gfs_mslp_pcpn_frzn_us_16.png

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The models today have a lot more agreement on the development of snow on the front/jet, as mentioned by Valpovike. A lot of the QPF is similar. Maybe we're back to a somewhat more typical pre-Halloween snowstorm? It seems like the pre-Halloween snowstorm happened on a few years. That 700mb is not warm.

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49 minutes ago, Newman said:

I'll be in Estes Park for the weekend, NWS calling for 6-8 which sounds reasonable. Probably won't be going up into RMNP sadly. Denver looking like 8-12

StormTotalSnowWeb1_CO.thumb.jpg.ec2ba09187e234369e6db9e9609c94f4.jpg

Grab some microspikes and hike Gem Lake. You won’t have to drive the park but you can still get a hike in. Will be pretty cold though…

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49 minutes ago, smokeybandit said:

The official forecast is a lot more bullish for my back yard than any model I've seen.  The advisory I'm under doesn't even match that map.

That's weird. You would think that the winter storm watch, replaced by a winter storm warning, would be the normal scenario. That is, for over 8" in 24 hours I believe.

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45 minutes ago, Newman said:

Not sure exactly how much Estes Park got, but we lost power this morning at the cabin we're staying at for a few hours. Probably 8-10" range total. Had like 3-4" yesterday and 5-7" overnight

PXL_20231029_142654506.thumb.jpg.d71d52f76349f8dcca5ac713dbd41e43.jpg

11.5” here, about 5 miles north of town. Yeah power is out in the entire EP Valley. This is the 2nd time for the transmission lines running down to Loveland have failed over the past year. They are slowly bringing power back on line thru a backup source running thru the Alva tunnel that goes thru the divide west. So it will be back soon. 

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16 hours ago, Chinook said:

Snow bands have shifted around the area all day. I think Fort Collins may have gotten a lot as the snow started early

 

snow bands denver.jpg

I probably got around 6”. The ground ate a lot of the snow. My neighborhood still has mostly clear sidewalks but the cars all have a nice thick layer. 

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