Storm Wrap Up–Kind Of

12/16/21 Thursday 4 am

I apologize for leaving everyone hanging. The truth is, I decided to wait until the snow stopped falling to post. It got later and later. Moderate to heavy snow was still falling late morning at Wolf Creek. I appreciate everyone’s concern for my safety. I won’t leave you hanging like that again.

This storm is not an easy one to wrap up properly. It was nearly impossible to measure the snow that fell. I have been doing it for a while and it was difficult for me to find an alternative measuring area because all of the snow that fell on my personal “snow stake” blew away as it fell. I had to resort to non-proper methods and, erring on the conservative side, I believe at least 5.5 inches of snow fell at my house. The snow fell throughout the day, finally stopping around 1 pm.

Wolf Creek’s last report was around 2:30 pm. They were up to 13 inches and reporting light snow. Temps had fallen into the single digits so they could have easily piled up more. I won’t know about Purgatory and Telluride for a couple of hours. I had gotten a midday report from Lake Purgatory of 7 inches. I also got a report from Durango (in town) of 3 inches.

The models did an excellent job with the timing and conditions during the frontal passage.  They did a pretty good job with the lower elevation precipitation totals. They did not do well with the higher elevation totals. I still don’t know what the Euro was thinking, I should have discounted it completely. The problem is the Euro has been such a bellwether model over the last few years, it is difficult for a forecaster to not pay attention to it. It was not a great day for forecasters overall.

I am not concerned. It is not like this was going to be our last chance for snow. I have talked about the situation with the MJO.  I don’t want to muddy up the issue further, but some of the folks I follow closely believe that the models are not properly indicating the current position of the MJO or its near-term future location.

In other words, the models are making a lot of mistakes and we are actually going to be in a much more favorable pattern very soon. It all correlates to Typhoon Rai approaching the Philipines. The deep low pressure and the large area of cloudiness are fooling the models regarding the position and path of the MJO.

I am going to stop delving any deeper into the MJO. Let me just say again, I am not worried about more storms coming. They will be on the way.

In my next update, I will talk about what some of the models are thinking will be our next storm in the next 6 to 10 days. I hope to have it out before 10 am.

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