Storm Karl just left the building and the next storm cycle is already visible on our snow maps. It's Snowvember! The snow gods really have something to compensate. If it continues like this we don't have wait that much longer before we can issue the first PowderAlert of the season. In this forecast:
The perfect storm brought a lot of snow to the Alps last weekend and now it's white everywhere. Some resorts without a glacier will even open some lifts this Friday (for example Andermatt and Sölden). There's between 20-60 cm of snow above 2000 meters and locally even a meter of snow! Check out the pictures below from Val Thorens, Sölden and Kronplatz.
The amount of snow that came down will settle itself the next couple of days, and will shrink a couple of centimeters. And even though the Alps are white, a warning is in place. The snow cover next to the slopes is still thin and the rocks, stones and branches are not far away. A bite in your P-tex is annoying, an injury or fracture is even worse. The same goes for the glaciers. It was warm last summer and many crevasses are hiding themselves like a sniper waiting to take you out. In short: keep calm. How attractive the snow cover might look, an injury will impact the rest of your season.
The perfect storm was followed by a retour d'est and that brought another meter of fresh snow. That storm is dumping its last flakes right now. It will result in another 15-30 cm of fresh snow in the central Piedmont on Thursday. You can also expect some snow in the other parts of the Piedmont, the French Alps and the west of Switzerland. The weather is calm in the other regions in the Alps. The sun is shining on the peaks in eastern Switzerland and Austria. Great days on the glaciers! Check out the snow forecast for the next 3 days below.
A new storm cycle will start on Sunday. A powerful low-pressure area near Norway will start a current from the north. But it will take a while before the cold air reaches the Alps. The first fronts will reach the Alps on Friday and Saturday, but the air is still relatively mild. The freezing level fluctuates between 1800 and 2000 meters on Friday and Saturday. The snow line will be around 1300-1600 meters. Expect some strong winds especially in the French Alps and Switzerland. The wind will pick up in Austria on Saturday. Not quite the perfect conditions to go out for a ride on the slopes. The sun will be shining south of the main alpine ridge.
The current will finally turn to the north on Sunday and the cold air reaches the Alps. The exact timing is not yet known, but I hope to give you more details the next couple of days. A Föhn from the north will hit the French southern Alps and the Italian Piedmont, but some flakes might come down in the Dolomites. It will snow heavily on the north side of the main alpine rides and the snow line will drop deep into the valleys on Sunday and especially on Monday. It's getting cold! The center of the storm is forecasted in Switzerland and the northern part of the French Alps until Tuesday, but Austria will get its share as well.
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I'll give you more details the next couple of days. With rain, snow, wind and low temperatures in the forecast this won't be the perfect to spend some time on the slopes of the glaciers. My advice: be patient. It will probably won't take to long before the first PowderAlert of the season can be issued.
And if you're into something different: check out our snow maps for the Apennines. With all the cold air coming in on Sunday, chances are that skiers and boarders from Florence and Bologna will be able to make their first tracks next week.
Stay stoked Morris