Dry through Thursday – Sloppy this weekend…

There are some impressive snow berms this winter! – Pic taken 3/6/2023

There are some impressive snow berms this winter! – Pic taken 3/6/2023

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Tuesday – 7 Mar 2023 – 3:20pm

The past…

At Stevens Field the high yesterday afternoon was 47 and so far, today we’ve hit 46. The low this morning was 31. Our low was 21 in O’Neal Park. Winds at the airfield peaked at 17mph yesterday afternoon and today the peak has been 12mph.

Average HighRecord High / YearAverage LowRecord Low / Year
4566 / 197212-18 / 1917

Precipitation summary… There was no measurable precip in the last 24 hours.

Forecast discussion…

Water vapor satellite this afternoon – Often this pattern brings us precip. In this case, there is hardly any storm energy. The purple arrows indicate the jet stream, and the green arrows indicate the moisture fetch into our area.
Water vapor satellite this afternoon – Often this pattern brings us precip. In this case, there is hardly any storm energy. The purple arrows indicate the jet stream, and the green arrows indicate the moisture fetch into our area.
Radar this afternoon – In spite of all those clouds, things are pretty quiet across much of the western US. There is some light precip falling over parts of southern NM.
Radar this afternoon – In spite of all those clouds, things are pretty quiet across much of the western US. There is some light precip falling over parts of southern NM.

Rest of today through Thursday… We will be between a ridge extending north through the central part of the country and a broad trough along the West Coast. This means we’ll see patches of mid and upper high clouds, seasonal temps, and breezy afternoons.

Temps… Highs will be in the low to high 40s and lows will be in the low teens to low 20s.

Winds… Peak winds will be around 20mph in the afternoons. The windy spots will see 25mph Wednesday afternoon.

Friday through Sunday… The pattern will remain weak and disorganized, but moisture will gradually increase. Upper level flow will be mostly out of the west and the northwest which does not favor us.

Hit and miss showers are possible Friday afternoon to Sunday afternoon. The best chance for showers is Friday evening through Saturday afternoon. Warmer air, typical this time of year, will limit snow in the valley.  Our mountains could do ok, but the central and northern Colorado mountains will be favored.

Temps… Friday through Sunday highs will be in the low to high 40s and lows will be in the low 20s to low 30s.

Winds… Winds will peak in the 15-20mph range each afternoon.

Snow levels…

Snow levels will rise to 8,000ft by Friday afternoon and will continue to rise to over 8,500ft by Friday evening. They’ll stay over 8,500ft into Saturday evening and then lower to around 7,500ft Saturday night.

Snow amounts…

Valley below 8,000ft: mostly rain with a dusting of snow possible

Valley above 8,000ft: a rain and snow mix with up to an inch of snow possible

Mountains above 9,000ft: 4-8”

NBM precip to Sunday evening expects 0.28” in town and up to 0.75” in our mountains. Note the yellow and orange precip bullseyes. These are areas that are favored with upper level west and northwest flow. For us, we call this the “scraps” pattern.
NBM precip to Sunday evening expects 0.28” in town and up to 0.75” in our mountains. Note the yellow and orange precip bullseyes. These are areas that are favored with upper level west and northwest flow. For us, we call this the “scraps” pattern.
NBM snowfall to Sunday evening expects 0.2” in town and up to 8” in our mountains.
NBM snowfall to Sunday evening expects 0.2” in town and up to 8” in our mountains.

Monday and beyond… We’ll start the week dry but then the pattern gets active again.

Euro ensemble precip plume – This product is read left to right, and times are in Zulu. Precip amounts are on the left side. The gray lines show the precip trends for 50 different versions of the Euro forecast model. I pay most attention to the mean and like to see it line up with the control. System 1 is Friday night and Saturday. The mean is just over 0.5” while the control expects a little more.  The other forecast models expect less from this system.  System 2 is roughly next Tuesday night through Wednesday night. The mean is similar to system 1 while the control expects around an inch. That far into the forecast period, I don’t trust the details and just track trends. Beyond system 2, the pattern stays active. The mean ends the 15-day period with 2.5” while the control expects 3”. Precip for March averages 1.77”, so this is pretty good! None of this is a given – there are a lot of uncertainties. This time of the year, one of the biggest questions, is “will it be cold enough to snow?”.  It’s too soon to say.
Euro ensemble precip plume

This product is read left to right, and times are in Zulu. Precip amounts are on the left side. The gray lines show the precip trends for 50 different versions of the Euro forecast model. I pay most attention to the mean and like to see it line up with the control.

System 1 is Friday night and Saturday. The mean is just over 0.5” while the control expects a little more.  The other forecast models expect less from this system. 

System 2 is roughly next Tuesday night through Wednesday night. The mean is similar to system 1 while the control expects around an inch. That far into the forecast period, I don’t trust the details and just track trends.

Beyond system 2, the pattern stays active. The mean ends the 15-day period with 2.5” while the control expects 3”. Precip for March averages 1.77”, so this is pretty good!

None of this is a given – there are a lot of uncertainties. This time of the year, one of the biggest questions, is “will it be cold enough to snow?”.  It’s too soon to say.

My next post will be on Thursday.

– 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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