Forecasters see wet weekend for Summit
Ryan Summerlin April 5, 2013
Forecasters say more of the wet, heavy snow that doused Summit County earlier this week may be on its way this weekend, with as many as 3 soggy inches and even some rain in the forecast for the first weekend of April skiing.
“We have a couple of weak systems coming through this weekend,” National Weather Service (NWS) meteorologist Jim Kalina said.
The first of the systems is on track to begin today with intermittent rain and snow expected throughout the day. Moisture will likely continue into Saturday night, when the chance of precipitation peaks at 50 percent and it’s likely Summit will see some snow.
Precipitation continues in the forecast through Sunday and into Monday, although forecasters only expect about 1-3 inches of total snow accumulation through the weekend.
The weather is on track to remain warm and mild despite the moisture, with high temperatures in the high 40s today, Saturday and Sunday.
But forecasters say the real weather news is in a system on track to arrive in Colorado early next week. It’s too early to have a clear picture of exact accumulations, but meteorologists said, at this point, it looks promising.
“While Spring has sprung for many areas of the country, a big storm could bring good snowfall to Utah and Colorado early next week,” weather blogger Joel Gratz wrote on in a weather update Thursday. “I need to be a bit reserved in this forecast since the storm is still five days away, but most major computer weather models agree on its general track, and this could mean more than a foot of snow for favored areas of Utah and Colorado.”
Based on 20-year statistics, April is one of the snowiest months of the year, delivering an average of nearly 28 inches of spring snow to Breckenridge.
March this year outstripped the 20-year average by almost 10 inches, with a total of 35.6 inches of new snowfall last month. The fresh powder made for very different spring skiing conditions from the prior year, when a weak existing snowpack disappeared during an uncharacteristically warm March and only 6 inches of new snow, according to NOAA weather data.
A wet spring snowstorm kick started April’s snowfall this year, delivering 4 inches of moisture-heavy snow to the lower elevations and a reported 7 inches at Breckenridge Ski Resort.
Summit County remains in an extreme drought, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor.