It is hard to believe, but the fourth weekend of November brings the fourth storm. You would think that the entire Alps are completely white by now, but the reality is different. Fortunately, this fourth storm will bring snow to the entire Alps and there's more snow in the forecast next week. In this forecast:
The first weekend of November brought the perfect storm with snow for the entire Alps. It was a special storm with a lot of snow, but because it was the beginning of November it was actually a bit too early in the season. The second weekend brought a northern Stau and the first PowderAlert of the season and during the third weekend there was another northern Stau on the maps, but this time it was followed by warm air and a rising snow line.
November brought snow to the entire Alps and two Staus from the north. It is therefore not surprising that the conditions in the northern Alps are excellent for the time of the year. There is a closed snow cover of 40-100 cm between 1500 and 2000 meters in large parts of the northern Alps. And that's just great. The valleys in the Alps may be green again after the mild weather of last week, but that is not surprising at the end of November.
The conditions in the southern Alps need some improvement. In particular the French southern Alps, the northwest of Italy (Aosta and the northern Piedmont), the south of Switzerland (Ticino and the Oberengadin) and Lombardia in Italy really need some more snow before you can even start thinking about freeriding.
A new storm called Reinhardt brings snow to the entire Alps. Storm Reinhardt is wedged between a massive high pressure area above the Atlantic Ocean and another massive high pressure area above Russia. This allows Reinhardt to push a lot of cold air towards the Alps. The spring weather of the past few days will change in just 24 hours.
The cold air will arrive in the Alps from the northwest, but before this happens, warm air is still pushed against the south side of the main alpine ridge. This results in snow on the south side of the Alps during the night from Friday to Saturday and on Saturday. The snow line is pretty high at first (around 1600 meters), but thanks to the orographic effects it will drop to 1200 to 1000 meters. At the same time, cold air is arriving in the Alps from the west on Saturday and it will start to snow in that part as well. The snow line is still very high before the cold air arrives (1800-2000 meters), but will drop rapidly towards 500 meters.
The Alps will end up in a real snow sandwich on Saturday. Snow from the south pushes against the south side of the main alpine ridge, but not much later snow will also be pushed against the Alps from the northwest. The Alps are in cold air from Sunday. In this unstable air layer, cold air is pressed against the north side of the Alps by a current from the northwest, causing it to snow from time to time. Sometimes quite heavily. The snow line will drop deep into the valleys. You can expect a decent amount of snow to come down in large parts of the Alps until Sunday night, although the French southern Alps and the northwest of Italy get the least snow.
High pressure will temporarily improve the weather on Monday. The sun will come out and it's cold. With all those fresh snow and blue spells it will be a good powder day on the north side of the Alps. Expect 20-45 cm of snow above 1500 meters. That's enough snow to cover up the old tracks and enjoy the second PowderAlert of this winter. Monday will be a powder day and I'll give you the details where you need to be on Sunday.
November will end with low temperatures. There is a new storm on the maps and cold air is sent to the Alps. This process results in very dynamic models and there are still shifting scenarios.
If you have a look at our snow maps for the long term you'll see a lot of snow. The maps have a lot of color and that is more than hopeful. Of course there will be some changes in the coming days, but cold air and snowfall offer a wonderful perspective to look at. If you want to look further into the future, become wePowder Pro member and get access to our 14-day snow maps. You'll never miss a dump again, but you also support us with the further development of wePowder. Thank you very much for your support.
We'll see what will happen the next couple of weeks, but November ends cold and we can wax up for the second PowderAlert of the season.
Stay stoked, Morris.