Up to 125 cm of freshies, but spring is on its way!


By meteomorris on 17 March 2016 · 0

The Russian bear visited the south side of the Alps and it really felt like winter again on Tuesday and Wednesday. The temperature dropped and it was snowing deep into the valleys. Somewhere between 40-100 cm came down between Tuesday evening and Thursday morning (locally even around 125 centimeters!). I forecasted more snowfall than visible on the maps, but Mother Nature decided to gave us even more freshies. The combination of extremely cold air and the humid air from the Mediterranean resulted in cold, dry, fluffy powder that consisted of much more air than normal. That's the reason that the amounts of snow were higher than visible on the maps and this proves my vision that weather models simply can't predict the right amounts of snow in the Piedmont.

Recent snowfall in the Italian Piedmont
Recent snowfall in the Italian Piedmont

It's ON in the Piedmont since Wednesday, but higher temperatures are on their way. Check out my tips below where to find powder the next couple of days. If you are traveling to the Alps the next couple of days and you want to support wePowder and this forecast, book your accommodation using this link. We receive a small percentage of every booking made through this link and this helps us a lot to improve wePowder and advice you even better. Thanks in advance! In this forecast:

  • Up to 125 centimeters of freshies
  • The battle between warm and cold air
  • PowderAdvice: Piedmont or go for a tour
  • Is it time for spring already?
  • Can we ride powder during Easter?

Up to 125 centimeters of freshies

A lot of snow came down in the Piedmont already. Just check out the images.

During snowfall on Wednesday
During snowfall on Wednesday

Lots and lots of freshies
Lots and lots of freshies

Time to dig out the lifts again
Time to dig out the lifts again

Dude, where's my car?
Dude, where's my car?

And for the riders NOT traveling to the Piedmont.... Well, check out this link. It will give a new meaning to the word DEEP.

The battle between warm and cold air

The eastern current that was responsible for the cold air has been pinched and milder, but also drier, air is arriving in the Alps. The big engine behind this is a large high-pressure system that keeps the storms away from the Alps. Cold air is getting sucked in from the north just east of this high pressure area, but this cold air simply doesn't reach the Alps. It will be a sunny weekend in the Alps, where the urge to venture deeper into the backcountry will be pretty big. Plan your routes well this weekend, because the sun has already gained momentum and the rising temperatures will definitely influence the snowpack in the afternoon. Remenber that there still is a weak layer present in many places that are waiting to get hit (especially with the low temperatures the last 10 days). If you make the right decisions than this could be a great weekend to go on a tour, maybe even the best weekend of the season. Or you can ride some deep powder in the Piedmont this weekend. The temperature will stay below zero on shady north-facing slopes and in sheltered forests, so you can definitely ride some powder there this weekend.

PowderAdvice: Piedmont or go for a tour

It's ON in the Piedmont and that's obviously your best bet in the Alps to ride powder (especially on north faces). But you can definitely find some nice snow in other regions in the Alps as well. The northeast of the Alps got around 15-30 cm of freshies the last couple of days, but you'll have to deal with a hard bottom layer. My PowderAdvice would be:

The last freshies in:

Some freshies (on a hard bottom layer) in:

And you'll probably find some good snow in lots of resorts in the Alps above 1500-2000 meters. Go out with a mountain guide if you don't have that much experience. You'll be surprised where those guys can bring you! And always carry an avalanche beacon, shovel and probe!

Recent glide snow avalanche in France
Recent glide snow avalanche in France

Is it time for spring already?

The battle between cold air from the north and cold air from the south will continue after the weekend. For now, the models go for a global rise of temperatures and a storm depression might bring some freshies to the southern Alps from Wednesday. If this will actually happen and how much snow will come down is simply not sure yet. More details on Sunday!

Can we ride powder during Easter?

The conditions are normally better during Easter than during Christmas and let's hope that we can ride some powder during Easter again this year. A storm on the south side of the Alps would bring freshies to the resorts in the main alpine ridge and the south side of the Alps. More about that on Sunday.

Happy powder chasing in the Piedmont. If you want to book your accommodation: support wePowder and use this link. Thanks to everyone who already made a booking!

Stay stoked! Morris


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