Powder Alert: Northern Idaho, Wyoming, Montana into Sunday & Welcome Pattern Change Ahead for the Rockies & Sierras

Posted By: The Ski Channel on November 25, 2012 12:42 pm

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I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and while the Rockies has not seen significant snow in the past 7 days the extended looks more promising.  The headlines of the week include over 59 inches at Whistler up in BC, and 2-3 feet in the Cascades with a decent amount of advanced terrain already open at many resorts including Crystal and Stevens. Snow is in the forecast for tonight (4-8), for the highest peaks near Spokane WA, Central and northern Montana and the Tetons in Wyoming.  The highest snowfall tonight into Sunday will be over Yellowstone (6-10) with perhaps 4-8 further south over Jackson (Highest elevations only). Jackson Hole Mountain Resort opened today with 2 lifts and my social media director “Blake” informed me that some expert  terrain is now open around Grand Targhee! 


I have run the models several times tonight and all eyes point to some decent moisture returning to the Sierra and Northwest by Wednesday/Thursday. The cold air stays trapped over Canada so expect snow levels to stay high (upper mountain snows likely).  The Sierra gets into the action on Wednesday (Light to moderate upper elevation snow), with the Northwest seeing increasing moisture Thursday-Sunday.  BC Resorts could hit the headlines again with colder air closer to Whistler and perhaps filtering down near Mount Baker by Friday.  The Sierra snow will increase in intensity next Saturday with colder air dripping snow levels to Lake Level. Moisture is on the decline once the front passes late Saturday so expect a quick hit of “blower powder” on top of the moderate wet stuff late this week.

ROCKIES:   The next chance for decent snow after this moderate wave tonight tonight in MT/WY/ID will be next Saturday night through Tuesday (Week #2).  The predominant flow is from the Southwest so expect snow to break out over the Wasatch and Tetons after midnight Saturday and continue through Monday morning.  The snow levels will be high (rain/snow mix at bases under 7,000) until a cold front pushes through next Sunday afternoon.  The San Juan’s in Colorado/New Mexico  will  be favored initially next Sunday AM-Monday AM (12 inches plus likely) with the central and northern  mountains not seeing snow until later in the weekend (Moderate amounts likely Monday-Tuesday week #2 ).  While this storm is still about a week away confidence will be higher by Wednesday however all models point to a wet pattern setting up over the West! Currently the deepest conditions in the West exist over the  Northwest, Sierra, Northern Idaho and the Tetons.

Stay tuned to Powderchasers.com where we strive to keep you smiling, chasing the best powder, and for those that know me “optimistic” and willing to pull the trigger on powder alerts earlier than any other weather source. Models easily can change in a 7 day period.

Powderchaser Steve