Three PowderAlerts! It's ON in southwest now and in the north from Tuesday!

By meteomorris on 12 March 2018 · 3

A lot of snow came down in the southwest of the Alps between Saturday and Monday morning. It was mild in the night from Saturday to Sunday and the snow line was temporarily higher. It dropped again to a more acceptable altitude on Sunday as a result of orographic cooling and colder air flowing in. Some friends living in the French Hautes Alpes confirmed that the forecasted snow line was spot on and that they also experienced some heavier snow. But heavier or not, the conditions were still awesome. It was ON!

It is still ON in the south(west) of the Alps today. At the same time it starts snowing nicely in the northern French Alps this afternoon, with the precipitation moving to the northwest and north of Switzerland in the night to Tuesday and on Tuesday itself. Tuesday and Wednesday will be powder days in the northwest (PA #22), after which you should drive to the south(west) on Thursday and enjoy PA #23. It will be a great week! In this forecast:

  • Up to 50 cm of fresh snow in the south
  • PA #21: Where and when to go
  • Lots of snow in the northwest on Monday afternoon
  • Powder days on Tuesday and Wednesday (PA #22)
  • Southern Stau from Thursday (PA #23)
  • Long term: colder, but also southern Föhn and Stau

Bosco Gurin
Bosco Gurin



San Domenico
San Domenico



Up to 50 cm of fresh snow in the south

The images above show the results of a weekend southern Stau. As expected, it was already ON in the south of the Ecrins and in the western and southern Piedmont on Sunday morning. It also started to snow more heavily in the south of Switzerland and the north of the Lombardia after lunch. Strangely enough, the front moved towards the Gotthard pretty last minute (and less towards the Bernina range). The result was that the most snow came down in Ticino, around the Simplon and the far north of the Piedmont, and less in the southwest of the Engadin. Storms from the south show once again that the devil is in the details. Keeping a close eye on the storm is more important with snowfall in the south, than snowfall in the north. It will stop snowing today, but since the storm in the northwest still has to move in it will be ON in:

About 30-50 cm of fresh snow came down between Saturday and Monday morning. This snow is a bit heavy up to an altitude of 1600-1900 meters, but above that altitude you can find great powder.

Current west-northwest
Current west-northwest

Lots of snow in the northwest on Monday afternoon

A storm depression called Yuliya ensures that the current turns to the west-northwest. Colder air flows into the Alps by the end of the day, and it will snow heavily in the northern French Alps and northwestern Switzerland especially from Monday to Tuesday. The precipitation spreads to the north of Switzerland and the Austrian Vorarlberg on Tuesday. I expect the most snow in the Isère (in particular the Belledone), the Savoie (with the exception of the Haute Maurienne), the Haute Savoie, around the Mont Blanc massif and the west of Wallis. Engelberg and the higher resorts in the northern Swiss alpine ridge will also get their share. You can expect 10-30, locally 40 cm of fresh snow and a snow line that locally drops towards the 1000 meters.

Powder days on Tuesday and Wednesday (PA #22)

If you are in the southern Alps today, it is worth considering driving to the northwest via the Mont Blanc tunnel or the St. Bernard tunnel from the Aosta. Tuesday will be a powder day there. It is in the middle of the week and peak season in the Alps is over, so it won't be that crowded. There's a PowderAlert for the following regions for Tuesday:

Tuesday and especially Wednesday will be great days. Especially when the sun comes out on Wednesday, it will be really good. Bluebird conditions and fresh snow. What else could go right? Too bad that the wind from the south might be pretty strong, and there's a higher risks of wind slabs during the day. It's the prelude to PA #23.

Current to the southwest
Current to the southwest

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Southern Stau from Thursday (PA #23)

The southern Stau will go full throttle again on Thursday. The current turns to the southwest again and again there is a lot of snow in the forecast for the southwest and south of the Alps. According to the latest calculations, the resorts south of the Ecrins, the Piedmont, Aosta and Ticino are most likely to get a lot of snow. More details later this week. The chase for now is:


Tuesday and Wednesday:

Just stretch your legs on Thursday morning, drink an espresso and it's back ON again in the southwest of the Alps after lunch. Just wait with booking your accommodation until the details are certain, but it definitely looks good!

The air remains unstable in the Alps after Thursday and chances are that the southern Alps will get more snow after Thursday. More details later this week.

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Stay stoked, Morris


  • DWF
    DWF op 12 March 2018 · 17:47
    What resort should I hit Wednesday ?
  • tarekbayazid
    tarekbayazid op 12 March 2018 · 21:46
    Morris, thanks again dude. This awesome season of me asking you loads of questions is coming to an end. Have this weekend in Verbier and then Easter in Wengen. For this weekend, we have to ski Sat in verbier, because my buddy’s gear is there. If Sunday we wanted to chase deeper snow, what’s the play? We can move a bit because our flight out of Geneva on sunday is late. We can hit St Bernard tunnel into Italy for sure.

    Thank you!!!
  • Jgirguli
    Jgirguli op 13 March 2018 · 08:53
    Lots of snow yesterday in Airolo, but lots of slides even in the trees. It was pretty warm and wet so the snow was quite heavy. It was a good day none the less.


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