|Sand Dunes and the Sangre De Cristo range – @darkglassphoto
This is a wild time in the world. A time where there isn’t going to be much news other than talks about COVID-19. There is, thankfully, the fact that the weather will continue to happen around you regardless of what else is happening in the world.
My advice to anyone that is in quarantine or to anyone that is going to be in quarantine, learn something new. Find a new hobby. Find something to distract yourself a little bit. I’m hoping to do more of that myself.
I’m going to have a lot of time to write blogs and create content related to weather and that is exactly what I’m going to do. So, please, let me know what topic you would be interested in learning about. I’d love to teach you!
Let’s Catch Up
It’s been a little bit since we’ve been updated on the weather. Thankfully, it has been rather quiet. It’s mid-March, so let’s talk about what this month has delivered thus far. As you know, it’s been dry recently. We’ve picked up 0.36″ of liquid precipitation and most of that fell on March 8 when we had a rather steady rain overnight.
Temperatures so far this month are running 5.5º above normal. We have had 0.5″ of snow accumulation thanks to a few snow showers on the 1st and 2nd.
We have half of the month to go so we should be able to make up for some of the deficits we currently have ongoing.
The forecast over the next couple of days will be rather nice. Highs will be in the 60s through Wednesday. There will be partly to mostly cloudy skies though, so that will limit the sun that will shine through. Wednesday will be the warmest day of the week because that is the day before a cold front moves through.
A low pressure that has been sitting over the west coast, that’s been delivering massive snowfall totals to the Sierra Nevada mountains in California, a chunk of that energy will break up, grab some pacific moisture and swing into Colorado and the Central Plains. The models are in slight disagreement right now as to where an actual low pressure will form and how strong it will be but they are in pretty good agreement as to the timing.
We should get some moisture, mainly in the form of rain for the Plains, Wednesday night into early Thursday morning. Once the low-pressure forms, cold air will begin to wrap around and chance our rain over to snow. This is looking to happen in the late morning to afternoon hours on Thursday. Snow will continue through much of Thursday into Friday morning and then snow showers will continue on Friday before things begin to clear out.
The current setup of storm is actually really good for us to get bigger snow totals. This would be a Four-Corners low, which would make this an Upslope event. If the path ends up following one that is favorable for us here in Denver, we could be looking at a storm delivering 3-6″ of snow. On the other hand, there will be some warmth with this storm, so temperatures are going to play a big role as well. If we see the rain last longers than snow will not have as much time to accumulate.
These are real concerns and the details of the exacts will be worked out in the coming days. I’m expecting the National Weather Service in Boulder to issue some kind of advisory IF the forecast stays in the current thinking.
There are Winter Storm Watches posted for Wyoming and Nebraska already for this storm.
Saturday through next Wednesday is looking to be calmer. Chilly and some clouds but no precipitation is expected.
Then we have another storm that has a similar setup to this week’s storm. A low pressure is going to form over the four corners and bring us the possibility of some more snow by Wednesday-Friday of next week. That one is a way out so don’t focus too much on that one.
Although every ski area in Colorado is closed right now because of COVID-19, some ski areas are allowing Uphill Access. Check with http://www.ColoradoSki.com
for those rules and announcements.
The mountains will benefit greatly from this storm cycle we are about to be in. Once the snow starts on Wednesday, in the SW mountains first, snow will continue through Saturday, on and off, with quite a bit of accumulation.
It looks like all mountains will receive 4-14″ of snow during this time period. Travel will be difficult at times so if you are planning, and can, travel, be ready for some slow spots.
The mountains won’t get much of a break, our next storm will begin to impact them on Sunday. This will mainly bring a few inches of snow to the southern and central mountains through Monday.
And just like that, one storm out, one storm in. Another storm is expected to impact the mountains from Tuesday through Friday. This is another storm that could bring 4-14″ of snow to the mountains with the southern mountains being favored for the higher-end snow totals currently.
Overall, this is an active pattern that we are about to head into. So, at least there will be some interesting, cold and rainy weather that will make us want to stay inside a little bit more.
Take care, everyone.
~Rain or shine
I’m Andy Stein