It's still too warm in the Alps and the temperatures locally go up to 20 degrees. There is a great risk on wet snow avalanches, especially in large parts of the northern and western Alps where the snow cover is getting more humid every day. Check this article for more information and don't forget to check your local avalanche bulletin. One positive thing is that the nights are cold and clear, so the snow cover can recover a little bit at night.
Dry powder is extremely rare these days and can only be found on steep north faces or faces where the sun simply doesn't shine. And that means you'll have to hike, skin and search for powder. But this definitely requires some knowledge and skills. Especially since it's getting even warmer tomorrow. Sometimes this search results in nice snow. And sometimes it simply doesn't.
Temporarily colder and snow
It will be too warm in the Alps until Saturday, after that there's some room for a northern Stau. A low pressure area called Ev temporarily crushes the dominant belt of high pressure areas, so we can enjoy a small north Stau this weekend.
This north Stau won't last for long and the precipitation is very limited. Winter returns only in the far east of the Alps (Steiermark and Salzburgerland) and only for a short period of time. High pressure area Ingo pushes the front away, so the snowfall and the colder temperatures are only very temporary…
It's starts snowing on Saturday afternoon. First from Engelberg to Steiermark, but the clouds in the west will disappear quite fast and the snowfall will concentrate on the Salzburgerland and Steiermark. You can expect around 20-40 centimeters of freshies in these regions and the rest of the northern Alps central should be happy with 2-10 centimeters. It's possible that some resorts in the Arlberg pick up around 20 centimeters, but that will be very locally. The snow line will temporarily drop to 900 meters and will climb up to 1500 meters again during the snowfall. Worth a PowderAlert? No. Should you drive longer than three hours for this snowfall? Definitely not.
Why PowderAlert #22?
Let's call it a bridging-alert between two high pressure weeks. And let's give the northern Alps that winter feeling that they missed this season. Let us not forget that it's only mid-March and that there will be another epic dump waiting for us.
Sunday morning will be good in the north of Salzburg and Steiermark, but the temperatures will go up on Sunday afternoon and the party will be over soon. Heavy snow on the mountain and rain in the valley. Not my perfect powder day.
Hope for the long term?
The temperatures will go up again after the weekend. Too warm for the time of the year and the models don't agree for the weather on the ultralong term. GFS showed a northern Stau on their maps, but that show has been cancelled and postponed for the weekend of the 22nd of March. The European model isn't showing any winter at all. Nope. Next week will be sunny again. Bring your skins, get up early, have some fun and get down again in time!