It is November the 12th and Powder Alert #1 of winter 2017 is a fact. There is a Northern Stau in the making with loads of fresh snow for the northern alps. A perfect storm brought already up to 100 cm last weekend and with this new storm it might be worthwhile to drive to your (local) hill for some fresh pow on Tuesday and Wednesday. In this forecast:
There is a new storm cycle moving in with loads of cold air and snow, but with a small delay. Compared to my Video Forecast from last friday, the storm is arriving a few hours later. At the moment the snow line is sitting at 1500-1800 meters and it is raining at lower elevations. For example at the Kleinwalsertal as you can see below. The map at te bottom left shows a small low-pressure area just north of the Alps. To the west, the air is already cold (blue arrow), but east of it the air is warmer (red arrow). This rather small low pressure area is moving to the east more slowly than expected so it will take a few hours longer before the cold air arrives.
By the end of Sunday afternoon cold air flows into the Alps which causes the snow line to drop. Monday will feel like a winter day. The cold air has taken over the Alps and we will see abundant snow falls in the Northern Alps. A classic example of a Northern Stau with a lot of fresh snow for the mountains north of the main alpine ridge. The snow line is expected to drop towards 600 and 800 meters. A strong to storm-strength northerly wind will be blowing in the higher alpine. In summary; snow, strong winds in the higher alpine and glacial temperatures above 2000 meters.
A high pressure area is moving in on Tuesday. In the early morning hours, the snowfall will come to an end in the northern regions. During the course of the day I do expect bright intervals and the strongs winds will slacken off. Temperatures will go up slightly, but the sky is relatively dry, blue (you may expect some residual clouds in the valleys) and sunny. Snow pack will increase significantly above 2000 meters. Even above 1500 meters there is enough snow expected. Enough to get you going on your tourski's or splitboards. The video below is from last Friday when Rogier and Martijn went out for a quick tour.
Tuesday and Wednesday will be powder days. Lifts are running already in 31 ski areas and when you're willing to use your tourski's or splitboards the upcoming days, the possibilities will be almost endless. Particularly when you stay on alpine meadows between 1500 and 2200 meters. Nevertheless, 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 glaciers of Austria will be perfect. Also in a number of non-glacier ski areas (part of) the lift system are running. Unfortunatey the majority of ski areas in France is still closed. But with some puzzling you may definitely find some beautiful terrain to shred some pow on Tuesday and Wednesday.
As of Tuesday a rdige of high pressure will dominate in the Alps, but the chance is that a new storm cycle will be moving in (again) at the end of the upcoming week.
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Tomorrow we will follow the snow falls and give you further tips where to shred pow on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Stay stoked Morris