Let me get right to the point: there will be a lot of snow falling in the coming days! While the Northern Alps will get a Südföhn phase, the Southern Alps will receive a lot of snow during the weekend. Some regions on the south side might even get 1 meter of fresh snow! After the weekend the snow chances for the Northern Alps will also increase.
In Bavaria and in many Nordstau regions in Austria, up to half a meter of snow fell in recent days. It snowed all the way down to the valleys, but of course the strong April sun melted that snow on the lower south slopes already. The April powder was tempting yesterday, but not entirely without danger. The snowfall was accompanied by a strong northwesterly wind, which means that Triebschnee will continue to be a problem in the Northern Alps in the coming days. With the upcoming föhn period and rising temperatures, the risk of wet snow slides also increases again.
With a high-pressure area over southeastern Europe, the Alps enter a southwestern flow. The pressure gradient between the Northern and Southern Alps increases, creating a föhn situation on the northern side. Temperatures climb significantly in the coming days, reaching 18 to 20 degrees in the valleys on Sunday. The days will not be entirely cloudless, partly due to increased concentrations of Sahara sand in the air.
In the coming days it will be the turn of the southern side of the Alps for a fresh layer of snow. Up to and including the end of the weekend, 20 to 40 and locally maybe even 50 centimeters of snow could fall in the French Southern Alps, Piedmont, Ticino and Lombardy. Today the southwestern flow is already causing more clouds and possibly some precipitation in the western Southern Alps. Tonight and tonight, Northern Piedmont and Ticino may also experience some light snowfall above 1200 meters. Tomorrow during the day, Piemonte in particular will continue to experience some light snowfall, but it is not until tomorrow evening that the real heavy precipitation will reach the Southwest Alps. Overnight, precipitation will also continue to spread eastward. I expect the snowline to be around 1300 meters in Italy and around 1600 meters in the French Southern Alps. In the course of Sunday possibly a few hundred meters higher. The intensity of the snowfall will temporarily decrease on Sunday afternoon, but in the evening there will be a lot of precipitation again.
At higher altitudes, we continue to experience this southern flow even after the weekend, but at the surface, the low pressure area moves further east, turning the wind to the north. Cooler air enters the Northern and Western Alps, giving the Südföhn no chance to break through. In this setting, it will snow on Monday and Tuesday in both the Northern and Southern Alps. While Monday in Piedmont is already clearing due to an increasing pressure gradient and föhn, further east it can go wild. It's a bit too early to talk about the exact amount of snow, but there will be another 30 to 50 centimeters of snow on a large scale. According to the morning outputs of the models, there could be even more with total amounts (from today until Tuesday) of up to a meter of snow from Ticino to the Julian Alps.
The snowline in the southeastern Alps will be quite high especially on Monday with values around 1600 to 1800 meters. In the Northern and Western Alps, colder air is flowing in, so the snow line in the Western Alps in the course of Sunday night already below 1000 meters. Austria has to deal a little longer with Südföhn, so it only starts snowing and cooling down in the course of Monday. On the north side, too, there could be a lot of snow starting Sunday night. From the French Northern Alps to the Arlberg, some 30 to 50 centimeters of snow may also fall. Further east, I expect it to stay at 10 to 30 centimeters. I must mention that there is still some change in these amounts.
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