Watch out what you ask for!

Sunset

Our cirrus filled skies have led to some great sunsets lately…photo by Mark Langford

Monday – 26 Dec. 2022 – 10:30am

The past…

At Stevens Field the high yesterday was 44 and the low this morning was 18 degrees. Humidity yesterday afternoon bottomed out at 18%. Winds at the airfield hit 7mph yesterday.

Precipitation summary…There was no precipitation to summarize!

Pagosa Springs historical data

Average HighRecord High / YearAverage LowRecord Low / Year
3756/ 19803-30 / 1911
310448169 464334978857509 8427265086087382920 n 1

Thanks to the Springs Resort for sponsoring this upcoming storm!

Screenshot 2022 12 26 080235
Winter Storm Watches are in effect for our area above 8000 feet and Wolf Creek Pass. As of this post time, this does not include the town of Pagosa Springs.

Winter Storm Watch for elevations above 8000 feet:

…WINTER STORM WATCH IN EFFECT FROM TUESDAY AFTERNOON THROUGH LATE WEDNESDAY NIGHT… * WHAT…Heavy snow possible mainly above 8000 feet. Total snow accumulations of 10 to 18 inches with upwards of 2 feet possible. * WHERE…In Colorado, Grand and Battlement Mesas, Uncompahgre Plateau and Dallas Divide, Northwest San Juan Mountains and Southwest San Juan Mountains. In Utah, La Sal and Abajo Mountains. * WHEN…From Tuesday afternoon through late Wednesday night. * IMPACTS…Travel could be very difficult. Patchy blowing snow could significantly reduce visibility, especially on ridge tops and mountain passes.

Winter Storm Watch for Wolf Creek Pass:

…WINTER STORM WATCH IN EFFECT FROM TUESDAY AFTERNOON THROUGH LATE WEDNESDAY NIGHT… * WHAT…Heavy snow possible. Total snow accumulations of 8 to 16 inches possible. Winds could gust as high as 50 mph. * WHERE…Eastern San Juan Mountains Above 10000 Feet. * WHEN…From Tuesday afternoon through late Wednesday night. * IMPACTS…Travel could be very difficult. Patchy blowing snow could significantly reduce visibility. The hazardous conditions could impact travelers over Wolf Creek Pass.

Travel Disclaimer: While we would love to help you make decisions on whether to drive over the pass, plan your trip or forecast if planes will be able to take off in Durango on a particular date, we don’t have the resources to do so…plus it puts us in potential legal liability if you go flying off Wolf Creek Pass when we suggested it would be a good day to travel. Please use these two links: New Mexico Road Conditions and Colorado Road Conditions. And this one for Durango Airport flight information.

Forecast discussion…

Watch out what you ask for! Most of us have been wishing for a decent snow storm this season in the valley and based on the latest model runs, we will be seeing chances for snow for at least a week, with a few breaks in between. The one big change in the forecast this week is the lowering snow levels as compared with what the models were forecasting a couple of days ago. As of this post, it looks like Tuesday night’s and Wednesday’s precipitation will fall as snow, instead of a mix.

Today through Tuesday afternoon… Ridging will build along the West Coast and put us under a dry northwest flow pattern. Systems will stay north of us, and we’ll see occasional patches of clouds. Clouds will increase Tuesday ahead of the next system.

Temps will be 5-10 degrees above average.

Tuesday evening to Thursday afternoon… A trough will slowly move in from the west, setting us up for a very wet SW flow. While temperatures will remain above average for this time of the year, snow levels will manage to drop below 7000 feet, allowing for the potential for some decent snow totals for the valley. With temps reaching the mid 30’s on Wednesday, this will be a fairly wet snow, so it will be harder to blow or shovel it off your driveway!

Friday through the weekend: It looks like another storm will move through this weekend with similar snow totals! I’ll be updated this system tomorrow.

Here is my latest snowfall forecast:

– Valley: 7-14” – From Tuesday night through Thursday. Highest totals will be from Tuesday night through Wednesday afternoon.

– Mountains: 15-25”

Screenshot 2022 12 26 091708
Our next system is still out in the Pacific but will be moving into the west coast in the next 24 hours. NW and westerly flow will keep us dry through Tuesday but there will be quite a few high clouds (cirrus) drifting by today and tomorrow.
StormTotalSnow 3
The latest NWS Grand Junction snow forecast through Thursday morning.
Screenshot 2022 12 26 092419
The latest NWS snowfall model is predicting 9 inches of snow for Pagosa Springs and Chama from Tuesday night through Thursday morning.
NBM Friday
The latest NBM model snow forecast through Friday. Most of this will fall on Tuesday night and Wednesday.
GFS Thursday
The latest GFS model is predicting 18.4 inches of snow for Pagosa Springs and 18.5 inches for Chama, NM through Thursday.
EURO Thursday
The latest Euro model is predicting 17.5 inches of snow for Pagosa Springs and 17.4 inches for Chama, NM. through Thursday.
Screenshot 2022 12 26 091904
By Tuesday night, our upper-level flow switches into the SW, bringing in a copious amount of moisture into our area.

My forecast…

Pagosa 5 day forecast 12 26 22
* The forecast periods are from 8am to 8am.

Check out my Pagosa Peak Cam (myearthcam.com) for watching hikers, bikers and of course, the weather.

-Mark Langford

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This website makes no guarantees about nor bears any responsibility or liability concerning the accuracy or timeliness of the weather information published on this website. All weather information published on this website is for educational and weather enthusiast purposes only. We do not issue Storm Watches, Warnings or Advisories as that ability falls with the National Weather Service, who is the only institution allowed to issue such warnings by law. We are not in any way linked nor affiliated with the National Weather Service, although we do share information and relay weather watches/ warnings, etc. Use of the information on page is at your own risk/discretion, and we are not responsible for any personal/property damages, injury or death associated with weather forecasts, reports or other information as well as communication exchanged in private messages and/or person.

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