It’s Showtime for Storm #2!

Saturday – 31 Dec. 2022 – 9:45am

The past…

At Stevens Field the high yesterday was 30 and the low this morning was 26 degrees. Humidity yesterday afternoon bottomed out at 83%. Winds at the airfield hit 8 mph yesterday.

Precipitation summary…More light snow moved in overnight. I measured 1.5 inches at our place about a mile north of Hatcher Lake. Totals ranged from a half an inch to 2 inches. Wolf Creek Ski Area only reported 1 inch of snow.

Screenshot 2022 12 31 083220
Snow totals overnight ranged from 0.50 to 2 inches.

Pagosa Springs historical data

Average HighRecord High / YearAverage LowRecord Low / Year
3556/ 19801-26 / 1911
310448169 464334978857509 8427265086087382920 n 1
Thanks to the Springs Resort for sponsoring this upcoming storm!
Screenshot 2022 12 31 074042
Winter Storm Warning for Wolf Creek Pass from Saturday afternoon through Monday afternoon. Winter storm Warning for our surrounding mountains above 9000 feet. Pagosa Springs is included in a Winter Weather Advisory from 6pm Sunday through Noon on Monday.

Winter Weather Advisory from 6pm Sunday to Noon Monday for Pagosa Springs:

Four Corners/Upper Dolores River-Animas River Basin- San Juan River Basin- Including the cities of Cortez, Dove Creek, Mancos, Durango, Bayfield, Ignacio, and Pagosa Springs 151 PM MST Sat Dec 31 2022 …WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY IN EFFECT FROM 6 PM SUNDAY TO NOON MST MONDAY… * WHAT…Snow expected. Total snow accumulations of 3 to 6 inches with locally higher amounts up to 9 inches in the foothills. * WHERE…Four Corners/Upper Dolores River, Animas River Basin and San Juan River Basin. * WHEN…From 6 PM Sunday to noon MST Monday. * IMPACTS…Plan on slippery road conditions. Patchy blowing snow could significantly reduce visibility.

Winter Storm Warning for Elevations above 9000 feet-Does not include Pagosa Springs

Southwest San Juan Mountains- Including the cities of Silverton, Rico, and Hesperus 746 AM MST Sat Dec 31 2022 …WINTER STORM WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 6 PM MST MONDAY… * WHAT…Heavy snow expected. Total snow accumulations of 1 to 2 feet with locally higher amounts up to 3 feet possible. Winds gusting as high as 40 mph. * WHERE…Southwest San Juan Mountains. * WHEN…Until 6 PM MST Monday. * IMPACTS…Travel could be very difficult to impossible. Patchy blowing snow could significantly reduce visibility

Winter Storm Warning for Wolf Creek Pass:

La Garita Mountains Above 10000 Feet- Eastern San Juan Mountains Above 10000 Feet- 400 AM MST Sat Dec 31 2022 …WINTER STORM WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM 5 PM THIS AFTERNOON TO 5 PM MST MONDAY… * WHAT…Periods of heavy snow expected. Total snow accumulations of 1 to 2 feet, greatest amounts across the eastern San Juan mountains. Winds gusting as high as 40 mph. * WHERE…La Garita Mountains and Eastern San Juan Mountains Above 10000 Feet. * WHEN…From 5 PM Saturday to 5 PM MST Monday, with the heaviest snow and greatest impacts expected Sunday afternoon through late Sunday night. * IMPACTS…Travel could be very difficult at times, with snow and blowing snow significantly reducing visibility, along with slick and snow packed roads. PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS… If you must travel, keep an extra flashlight, food, and water in your vehicle in case of an emergency.

Avalanche Watch:

THE FOLLOWING MESSAGE IS TRANSMITTED AT THE REQUEST OF THE COLORADO AVALANCHE INFORMATION CENTER. …AVALANCHE WATCH IN EFFECT FROM 5 PM SATURDAY UNTIL 11 PM MONDAY… *WHAT…The Avalanche Danger will rise to HIGH (Level 4 of 5) by Saturday evening. Very dangerous avalanche conditions expected. *WHERE…The Elk Mountains, San Juan Mountains, Sawatch Range, Gore Range, Rabbit Ears Range, Medicine Bow Mountains and Never Summer Range *WHEN…Expect very dangerous avalanche conditions to begin Saturday evening and last through Monday evening in the North and Central Mountains. Very dangerous avalanche conditions start on Sunday in the Southern Mountains. *IMPACTS…Heavy snow and strong winds will create dangerous avalanche conditions by Monday night. Large and dangerous avalanches will be easy to trigger once the new snow accumulates. Avalanches will run naturally.

Travel Disclaimer: While we would love to help you make decisions on whether to drive over the pass, plan your trip or predict 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…

The rest of today through-Monday: Mostly cloudy with a chance for 1/2- 1 inch of snow. Temps will rise to around freezing today. The trough is currently off the coast of CA and moving our direction. Upper-level winds are currently out of the west, but will be switching to the SW, pumping in lots of moisture on Sunday and Monday. The tricky part of the forecast is Sunday, when warm air moves in ahead of the trough and associated cold front. Snow levels will be wobbling around 7500 feet and temps could reach the low 40’s during the day. It is very possible that those of you living below 7500 feet could see mainly a snow mix and cold rain on Sunday until the trough and cold front move through after sunset. By Sunday night the snow levels drop to under 7000 feet, so everyone should see snow Sunday night and Monday. Best odds for heavier snow totals will be Sunday night through Monday morning. Highs on Monday will be in the upper 20’s to low 30’s.

This will be a heavy, wet snow event, so there could be power outages and some tree branches snapping due to the snow. It would be a good time to check your generators and other power backup plans.

Tuesday: Mostly cloudy with a chance for snow showers. Highs in the upper 20’s to low 30’s.

Wednesday: Partly cloudy with lows in the single digits and highs in the upper 20’s to low 30’s

Here is my snowfall forecast from Saturday night through Tuesday morning.

-Valley: 7500 feet and below: 5-10 inches of snow with 0.10 to 0.20 inches of rain on Sunday.

–Valley: Above 7500 feet. 8-14 inches of snow.

–Mountains: 20-30”

Screenshot 2022 12 31 091535
The trough is currently off the coast of CA and moving our direction. Upper-level winds are currently out of the west, but will be switching to the SW, pumping in lots of moisture on Sunday and Monday.
StormTotalSnow 7
The latest NWS Grand Junction snow forecast through Tuesday morning.
Screenshot 2022 12 31 081837
The latest NWS snowfall model is predicting 9 inches of snow for Pagosa Springs, 7 inches for Chama, NM and 22 inches for Wolf Creek Pass from today through Tuesday morning.
NBM 6 3
The latest NBM model predicts 8.7 inches of snow for Pagosa Springs and 11.4 inches of snow for Chama, NM. through Tuesday morning.
Euro 8
The latest Euro model is predicting 11.6 inches of snow for Pagosa Springs and 11.3 inches for Chama, NM through Tuesday morning.
GFS 11
The latest GFS model is predicting 17.3 inches of snow for Pagosa Springs and 16.5 inches for Chama, NM. through noon on Tuesday.

My forecast…

Pagosa 5 day forecast 12 31 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

Pagosa Weather Blizzard Level Sponsor

Pagosa Weather Storm Sponsor

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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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