Vail could see new snow coming through this week | VailDaily.com
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Vail could see new snow coming through this week

Besides snow, we're going to see much cooler temperatures in the area

The snowpack so far for Vail Mountain is right in line with the 30-year median.
The forecast: Here’s the National Weather Service forecast for Vail for the next several days.
  • Feb. 4: Snow showers likely, and much colder, with a high around 11.
  • Feb. 5: A 30% chance of snow showers after noon. High of about 20.
  • Feb. 6: Snow showers likely, with a high near 29.
  • Feb 7: Snow showers, with a high near 34.
  • Feb. 8: Slight chance of snow showers, with a high near 37.
  • Feb. 9: Chance of snow showers, with a high near 38.

Keep those layers handy. Snow, and colder temperatures, are in the forecast for the next several days.

A combination of a storm system from the Pacific Northwest and a trough of cold air from the north are expected to bring a fresh shot of winter to much of Colorado over the next few days.

It’s somewhat uncommon for both the east and west side of the Continental Divide to be hit with snow at the same time, but that’s what happened Monday.

The snow came first to the Front Range. Early Monday afternoon, Colorado Department of Transportation spokesman Bob Wilson said he could already see traffic starting to slow on Interstate 25 near Empower Field at Mile High, where the Denver Broncos play.

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At that point in the day, snow had barely started in the Vail Valley. But the Front Range and Western Slope storms were both expected to drop several inches of snow by the end of Tuesday.

At the National Weather Service office in Grand Junction, forecaster Dan Cuevas said Vail could see between three and seven inches of snow by the end of Tuesday. Those amounts could be higher at higher elevations.

The snow is expected to come an go through the rest of this week.

The Open Snow website is predicting Vail to receive as much as 19 inches of new snow over the five to seven days.

Cuevas said a low-pressure system coming in from the Pacific Northwest is expected to bring a flow of “pretty moist” — along with colder temperatures — through the rest of the week.

After weekend temperatures in the 40s throughout the Vail Valley, Tuesday’s forecast for Vail calls for a high temperature of only 11 degrees. The forecast doesn’t call for temperatures in the 30s again until Friday.

Cuevas said Saturday presents the week’s lowest chance of snow, with another storm revving up by Sunday.

The snow and cold weather have state road crews out in force.

Wilson said crews on the Eastern Slope had gone to 12-hour snow shifts by Monday morning. Crews along the Interstate 70 corridor are on those 12-hour shifts throughout the winter and into April.

With snow expected in the mountains through much of the week, Wilson advised motorists to make sure they have adequate tires, and to give themselves plenty of time to get where they’re going.

Traffic information is available at http://www.cotrip.org, goi70.com and by phone at 511.

However much snow falls over the next several days will add to a pretty good snow season.

According to data from the Eagle River Water and Sanitation District, the snow measurement site at Vail Mountain on Jan. 28 showed snowpack as measured in “snow water equivalent at 101% of the 30-year median. That measurement came before a few days of warm, sunny weather.

The measurement site at Copper Mountain — the closest site to the headwaters of Gore Creek — showed the snowpack at 114% of the 30-year median.

The Fremont Pass site, the closest to the headwaters of the Eagle River, showed the snow water equivalent at 107% of the 30-year median.

There’s plenty of snow season left to fill out the area’s snowpack. The measurement site at Vail generally peaks toward the end of April. The Fremont Pass site, which is more than 1,000 feet higher than the measurement site in Vail, generally peaks in mid-May.

Vail Daily Business Editor Scott Miller can be reached at smiller@vaildaily.com or 970-748-2930.


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