Snow Monday night and Tuesday

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Happy Thanksgiving!

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Thanksgiving – 24 Nov 2022 – 11:40am

The past…

At Stevens Field the high yesterday afternoon was 42. The low this morning was 24.  Most of us had lows in the mid to high 20s – 5-10 degrees warmer than I expected. Winds at the airfield hit 16mph yesterday afternoon. Our winds in O’Neal Park consistently gusted to 20mph most of the night.

Average HighRecord High / YearAverage LowRecord Low / Year
4661 / 194312-20 / 1931

Precip summary… Most reports were zero but two CoCoRaHS reports indicated a trace of snow. Wolf Creek reported 2” of new snow – a little better than the dusting I expected.

Forecast discussion…

Water vapor satellite this morning – The low has already moved into south-central NM.  The track has been a little farther west and south than expected so the heavy snow bullseye has shifted to southeast NM.
Water vapor satellite this morning – The low has already moved into south-central NM.  The track has been a little farther west and south than expected so the heavy snow bullseye has shifted to southeast NM.
Radar this morning – Precip is spinning counter-clockwise around the low. It’s snowing along much of I-25 from Raton to Colorado City.  CDOT web cams indicate that roads and visibility are poor in most that area.
Radar this morning – Precip is spinning counter-clockwise around the low. It’s snowing along much of I-25 from Raton to Colorado City.  CDOT web cams indicate that roads and visibility are poor in most that area.

Today to Monday afternoon… First the low will slide farther to the south and ridging will build in from the north. Then Saturday night, a fast-moving system will track northwest to southeast across Colorado. That will bring more clouds and a few mountain snowflakes. Winds and clouds will start increasing Monday afternoon ahead of the next system.

*** Travelers need to keep an eye on road conditions for Le Veta and Raton Passes today, and on eastern NM and far western TX through tomorrow. ***

NBM snowfall to Friday at 11pm – Those are impressive snow amounts over southeastern NM!
NBM snowfall to Friday at 11pm – Those are impressive snow amounts over southeastern NM!   

Monday evening through Tuesday… Our streak of dry weather will end! A low pressure system will move through with a more favorable trajectory. Three out of the four primary forecast models are trending down while the other is holding steady so forecast confidence is shaky. 

For now I’m sticking with my initial snow forecast:

Valley: 2-4”

Mountains: 10-15”

As always, I’ll adjust timing and snow amounts as the data gets better.

Liquid equivalent precipitation through next Tuesday at 11pm for the NBM, Euro ensemble, GFS ensemble, and Canadian model ensemble. Amounts and trends… NBM: 0.22” and the trend is down slightly – Euro: 0.32”and the trend is steady – GFS: 0.08” and the trend is down considerably – Canadian: 0.18” and the trend is down. Three of the four models show a decreasing trend, but I’ll stick with my forecast for now. Note: For this system I’m thinking a 10:1 snow ratio for the valley and 15:1 for the mountains.  Based on these four models, that equals a range of 0.8” to 3.2” of snow for Pagosa Springs.
Liquid equivalent precipitation through next Tuesday at 11pm for the NBM, Euro ensemble, GFS ensemble, and Canadian model ensemble.

Amounts and trends… NBM: 0.22” and the trend is down slightly – Euro: 0.32”and the trend is steady – GFS: 0.08” and the trend is down considerably – Canadian: 0.18” and the trend is down. Three of the four models show a decreasing trend, but I’ll stick with my forecast for now.

Note: For this system I’m thinking a 10:1 snow ratio for the valley and 15:1 for the mountains.  Based on these four models, that equals a range of 0.8” to 3.2” of snow for Pagosa Springs.

My forecast…

See the forecast discussion above for more specific timing and snow amounts. * The forecast periods are from 8am to 8am. *
See the forecast discussion above for more specific timing and snow amounts.
* The forecast periods are from 8am to 8am. *

My next post will be on Saturday.

– Shawn

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I’ve been a “weather geek” since I was young child. I joined the military out of high school and was lucky to get my dream job in weather. I have 20 years of military weather experience which includes forecasting the weather all over the world. Highlights were six years in Alaska and making life and death weather decisions during deployments. I love mountains, I love snow, and I love summertime thunderstorms. I spend a bunch of time playing outdoors and found my paradise in Pagosa Springs. I do Pagosa Weather as a community service. Hopefully you find us helpful!
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