Subtropical for just a little while?
A huge high pressure area with cold, continental air and subtropical for just a little while. A miracle is happening!
Two weather systems are fighting ‘the battle for Europe’ at the moment. In the left corner the storm in the Atlantic and in the right corner a huge high pressure area above Russsia. This means more fireworks than all the different models had in mind for us the last couple of days. The countdown has started and details will determine the winner of the this battle.
Today sure is the best day of the week. The northern parts of the Alps and the Vorarlberg got around 10-25 cm of freshies due to the northweststau. But the Kleinwalsertal, Tannheimertal and Bregenzerwald got 40-60 cm. Les Marécottes, the Jungfrau region, Flumserberg and Adelboden-Lenk got around 40-80 cm. The snowline dropped to 900-1100 meter. First chair alarm for today for:
*The northern parts of the southern French Alps
*Savoie and Haute Savoie
*Wallis and the Swiss northern Alps
*The Kleinwalsertal, Tannheimertal and the Bregenzerwald
The weather is pretty nice today and the warmer air is expected during the night from Wednesday to Thursday, so you’re fine today.
A warm front is hitting the Alps during the night form Wednesday to Thursday. Warm and humid air is coming in with a west-southwest current. This current is relatively warm, but there’s still a lot of cold air present in the Alps, so this will prevent the snowline not to go higher than 1200-1500 meter. You’ll find dry snow above 1800 meters. See the warm front below on the map (the red line in the French Alps).
The snowline is rising to 1200-1500 meter on Thursday
This warm front is followed by a cold front (the blue line on the map above). The cold front is pretty quick and will take over the Alps during the night from Thursday to Friday. A so called ‘occlusion’ is forming. The result of this occlusion is a rapid drop of the snowline to 800-1000 meter and the occlusion leads to lots of snow due to a northwest stau. This will happen during Thursday night and on Friday morning. You can ride between the trees on Friday and when the sun comes out in the afternoon, you could have some fun in the higher alpine areas.
Occlusion with colder air on Friday
If you want to hit the Alps from today till Friday, I’d go to one of this regions:
-Mt. Blanc (lots of snow and nice trees)
-Wallis (the higher resorts on Thursday, the trees on Friday)
-Vorarlberg (especially on Friday the treeruns in the Kleinwalsertal, Tannheimertal and Bregenzerwald. There will be some more sun on Thursday, so you could go for the higher alpine regions as well)
A new and very active warm front is moving in from the west on Saturday. The snowline will rise to 1600-2000 meter, locally even 2200 meter. The freezinglevel in the west will go to 2500 meter, but in the east it will be around 700 meter. You can expect lots of precipitation in the west and northwest. Expect 50-110 cm of freshies above 2200 meter.
A very active warm front, the snowline is rising to 1800 meter in the west
Please notice that these are the details out of the latest calculations and details mean a lot in this battle of the storms. The models calculated warm air in the complete Alps yesterday. The current calculations today show that this is the case for the French resorts (excusons-nous), the Swiss resorts and the Austrian resort west of Innsbruck. The details can change during the next couple of days (and even hours).
It will probably be the warmest on the 23rd of December and especially in the west and northwest of the Alps. The inneralpine valleys will be less influenced by this warmer air. You should think of resorts such as Bonneval sur Arc, Monetier les Bains, Val d'Isère, the resorts in Italy, but also parts of Graubünden and Haut-Valais. It will be good riding in these valleys and resorts when the sun comes out on Sunday.
It’s still snowy, rainy, windy and the snowline will shift due to the western jetstream.