Bonus Storm

To pick up where I left off this morning, this is the type of storm that usually results in  Northern and Central Mountains and to a slightly lesser extent the NW San Juans (Telluride, Silverton, Red Mountain) getting considerable snow. Usually, these things blow through here towards the end and might dump a couple of inches and then we’re done. The only reason that may not happen is that the models have been seeing a change in the jet overhead from around 1 am Sunday morning until 8 or 9am.

That is why I am calling this a “Bonus Storm” because if it happens the way the models suggest any snow we get will be a bonus.  If it starts earlier and lasts longer we will get more snow, if the buckle in the jet does not occur or lasts for a shorter period of time we will get less to none in some areas. Again, I am talking about Durango and Purgatory.

The Euro has been on this for a long time so I do expect it to happen, it is just a matter of how long it lasts. The last time I can remember a similar situation was in early December, I believe 2008 but it may have been 2009. We were supposed to get that brief enhancement in the area, the Northern and Central Mountains got hammered we were supposed to get 1-2 inches in town. The disturbance in the jet started to develop into a closed low in NE Arizona the system stalled out, then bombed out and we got 8-15 inches in the lower elevations and hammered in the mid and higher elevations. The likelihood of that happening is extremely remote and I do not expect that to happen, but in that case, nearly the whole state got clobbered.

Here is what I am talking about regarding the jet enhancement. Here are the model’s projected conditions for 8 pm Saturday night


The light blue indicates very light snow.

Here is the jet


Notice the area of the jet over Colorado in the red and orange is oriented nearly horizontal indicating westerly flow.

Fast forward to the 2am-5 am time period here is the jet buckling


Southwest flow

Now look at the projected conditions for Sunday at 5 am


Notice how it is almost exclusively the SW San Juans and adjacent valleys that are getting snow.

I can’t tell you how long that will last, the Euro only has it in place for a few hours. All said and done here is what the Euro has for totals, this will likely change again so too early to get excited.

Euro snow121312z.png

This shows a solid 8-10″ for Purgatory with 2-6″ for the lower and mid-elevations, 10-15″ for Telluride-Red Mountain-Silverton- Ouray (which may get a gorge event) your snow will fall before and after the jet buckles. Wolf Creek should get 10-15″ but the potential exists for much more– I would avoid travel across Wolf Creek Saturday night and Sunday morning. As always, if there is something interesting that arises this afternoon I will post. Otherwise, I will post a couple of times on Saturday.

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