Today presents very warm temperatures, increasing cloudiness and wind as the day progresses just ahead of a Pacific storm that is working it’s way south on the West Coast and moving into the Great Basin later today on southwest flow.
This low pressure system is drawing copious amounts of subtropical moisture with rain for the lower elevations of the San Juans tonight and turning to sleet/snow above 11,000′. Early Friday morning a cold front enters the mix lowering the snow levels to about 8,000′. Anticipate 5-10″ of snow above TL on Friday with higher amounts probable (a foot or more) on southwest facing terrain of the higher peaks. With the very warm spring temperatures of this storm it is difficult to forecast the rain/snow line elevation.
This will be a fast moving storm system and should be east of the divide by Friday evening with lingering snow fall in the high country. The weekend should be clear then next week the models show a slow moving storm on zonal flow possibly splitting and tracking far south of our mountains but if it travels a little further north it could produce another nice storm for the San Juans followed by high pressure and dry conditions into April.
Infrared Satellite – GOES West 12 Hour Loop
Visible Water Vapor – GOES West 12 hr Loop
GFS – US – 500mb – Loop