Loads of snow in the west


By meteomorris on 29 March 2013 · 0

Sander finding some pow in Montgenèvre
Sander finding some pow in Montgenèvre

PowderAlert #27 is on! It was sunny and relatively cold on Wednesday and the snow kept coming down and down and down on Wednesday. This was especially the case in the stau regions of the Pelvoux, the Mont Blanc and the resorts in the west of Wallis, where the snow line was dropping rapidly. The snow line was way higher in all the other regions in the Alps.

Sander Kan on the Cime du Plan
Sander Kan on the Cime du Plan

We had some great powder lines in the sun on Wednesday and we straightlined the faces of the Cime du Plan in Montgenevre. We had some great powder lines in the sun on Wednesday and we straightlined the faces of the Cime du Plan in. It was an awesome day with surprisingly great powder. But at the end of the day we saw the first signs of the front that would bring snow from the west.

Front coming in from the west
Front coming in from the west

We woke up with freshies at 1100 meters on Thursday morning. The first flakes were coming down in St. Crepin in the Hautes Alps. We drove to La Grave and practiced an crevasse rescue. But the snow was falling and falling, the storm was kicking in, so we duck into the trees to ride powder there.

Prepared...for everything
Prepared...for everything

Flakes as pizzas kept coming down. The day started with five centimeters of freshies on P2 in La Grave, but ended with rampapapapam pillow runs with forty centimeters of freshies in the larch forests of La Grave. What a day! We found pillows in the forests that we’re in mid winter shape!

Wrapping up after a powder day
Wrapping up after a powder day

It was snowing intense in the village of La Grave, but we had to go to the other side of the Col du Lautaret. Back to Serre Chevalier, where we found 20-30 centimeters of freshies….in the valley! Friday will be deep!

Col du Lautaret
Col du Lautaret

Short term, temporarily warmer

A front is bringing colder temperatures to the east on Friday, but the western regions of the Alps are already experiencing higher temps because of the incoming warm front coming in. This will cause the freezing level to rise to around 2000 meters of Friday morning and Saturday. It will be warm in the northern Alps on Saturday as well.

The low pressure area Dieter is causing a warm front for the west on Friday
The low pressure area Dieter is causing a warm front for the west on Friday

The snowline in the west and the north will rise to 1300-1900 meters and it can rain at pretty high altitude especially in the Isère. The inneralpine areas will be colder longer, but it will be warmer eventually over there as well.

High temperatures are coming in from the southwest
High temperatures are coming in from the southwest

You’ll find the best powder in the resorts where it was dumping on Thursday. Pretty obvious right? But….you’ll better look for resorts where it will be cold and where you can ride between the trees (between 1800 and 2300 meters). And that can differ from valley to valley. You’ll have to search a bit for the best quality white European powder though, but you’ll find plenty!

A new front from the northwest is coming in on Saturday. The temperature will drop and the wind will turn to northwest to north. It will start snowing in the northwest of the Alps. The snow will reach deep into the valleys between Saturday afternoon and Sunday. The resorts north of the line Chambéry-Innsbruck will get a lot of the fluffy white stuff. The snowline will drop to as low as 500 meters in the east and to around a 1000 meters in the west. The front will move to the east on Sunday.

Based on the maps:

The temperature is dropping
The temperature is dropping

The wind is turning north on Saturday afternoon

Snow in the northwest
Snow in the northwest

Powder advice

Friday - Saturday

It’s getting warmer and there still is a lot of humidity in the air. Go for higher altitude resorts, that don’t suffer that much from the sun and where it will be pretty cold. Do realize that the snow might get heavy. Go for the inneralpine resorts of:

Sunday - Monday

It's gettin colder, snow in the northwest and deep into the valleys. You'll find the best conditions in:

Stay stoked

Morris


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