Steamboat Springs Mike Chamberlain, a forecaster with the National Weather Service in Grand Junction, on Sunday made a prediction about Monday’s weather that will be welcomed by many in Steamboat Springs who have “danced” for snow in the recent dry weeks.
“Snowfall should be fairly decent most of the day” on Monday in the mountains, Chamberlain said.
The forecaster on Sunday said that a storm approaching from the Pacific Northwest is expected to drop 5 to 10 inches of fresh powder in the mountains surrounding Steamboat on Monday, with 2 to 4 inches of snow accumulating in town.
“The peak of the precipitation will occur sometime during the day,” he said.
He said cloud cover would increase Sunday night with snow expected to arrive sometime after midnight and continue in the mountains through Monday night. He added that the storm is expected to impact all of the mountain areas in the state. To date, snowpack in the Yampa Valley and its surrounding mountains is well below normal. Chamberlain said a moisture measuring site near Steamboat Ski Area is 44 percent of normal, and a site at Dry Lake is recording a snowpack level that is 53 percent of normal.
The 6 inches of snow Steamboat Ski Area received Jan. 7 was the first significant snowfall event in the Yampa Valley since Dec. 22. Chamberlain added there are signs that the ridge of high pressure that has kept snow mostly out Steamboat’s forecast for weeks is starting to break down, and more Pacific-born storms could be on track to hit the ski area as early as Wednesday night.
“It looks like we’re in for a pattern change,” he said. “There’s a potential for some relatively decent snowfall (this week), and we’re keeping our eyes on it. We’ll just have to wait and see what happens.”
To reach Scott Franz, call 970-871-4210 or email scottfranz@SteamboatToday.com