MLK weekend ski forecast

Prep the skis, because you may not see snow out your window but it looks like a fairytale three-day weekend is coming up.

Summary: Light to moderate snow has been and will continue to refresh a few lucky trails in the north country (see Jackson Ski Touring, Bear Notch, Waterville Valley, Craftsbury). Some areas could get several inches by the end of Thursday. Then a major snowstorm will arrive in the middle of MLK weekend and dump new and fresh powder broadly across the region. Bluebird days with clear cold weather on Friday, Monday and Tuesday bookend the weekend.

BETA reports as of yesterday that snow is gone in lower elevations of the ‘dacks, and hard and icy where it exists. However a good snowfall should make the “gentler terrain skiable again”.

‘State of the touring centers’ is updated. I won’t bother with the snow depth graphic this time around.

Forecast: Light to moderate snow north of Albany and the Vermont-Massachusetts border on Thursday, with several inches accumulation possible in the far northern areas by Friday morning. Daytime temperatures across the northeast will range from just below freezing to the upper 40s today (Wednesday) and Thursday. NOAA forecast graphic for Thursday early morning:

Weather forecast for northeast US, 2020-0116 4am
Weather forecast for northeast US, 2020-0116 4am (NOAA)

Winter temps make a brief reappearance Friday, ranging from single digits (cold finally!) in far northern New England and New York (ie, the High Peaks, Northeast Kingdom, White Mountains), and Maine, to around freezing in NYC. Some lake effect snow could give Tug Hill and central NY a bit of additional snow.

A real winter storm is due to arrive from the west Saturday afternoon and extend into Sunday. Areas across the southern Adirondacks and New England could see 8+” of snow. Osceola could get more than 12″. Dare we hope it snows enough on the mid-Hudson or downstate region to make some tracks?

Elsa and snowflake
Bring the magic, Elsa!

Daytime temperatures for Saturday and Sunday will be in the teens and 20s in the far north and higher elevations, and upper thirties in NYC. The storm may start as snow in the downstate region on Saturday but is likely to end as rain and or ice/sleet. We’ll just have to see how the rain/snow line moves. Here’s a forecast graphic at the time snowfall is likely to be at its widest extent during Saturday evening:

Weather forecast for northeast US, 2020-0118 7pm
Weather forecast for northeast US, 2020-0118 7pm (NOAA)

Bright and cold MLK day and next Tuesday. Daytime temps will be in the single digits in the far north and higher elevations, with highs in the 20s for southern New England and the mid-Hudson valley.

Thanks for reading! Get those skis ready.

Seize the skis

Summary: If you can get out skiing between now and Friday afternoon, do it! We don’t see snow close by, but just beyond the Hudson valley, places within a few hours drive have great conditions. Weather uncertainties make it hard to predict what cover will remain after warm weather and rain arrives this weekend.

Canterbury Farm, Notchview, and Prospect Mountain are within easy range for a 36-hour getaway. And if you pack a weekend bag and leave now, you can be having dinner in Garnet Hill, ski all day Thursday and return Friday. Leave the work for the weekend, when it’ll be raining anyway.

Further north, conditions in the White Mountains seem excellent. And the BETA report from 1/5/20 on Adirondack backcountry says: “While most areas only received the 3″ of the predicted 3-5″, skiing is now quite good in many areas.  Generally cold temperatures are predicted for [the] week with additional chances for additional light snow.  So get out and ski if you can.”

Listen to mom-

Hit the link to ‘State of the touring centers’ for details. Here’s the current visual of snow depth:

This map is going to look very different on Monday

Forecast: In the north country (north of Albany and the MA-VT/NH border), light snow continues Wednesday. Greatest accumulations expected in central NY and the mountain regions of NY, VT, and NH. Thursday will be coldish and sunny, but temperatures will actually start rising Thursday night. A chance of some snow or wintry mix very early Friday, but precipitation will transition to plain rain.

Saturday will be rainy throughout the northeast as daytime temps zoom up to about 60 in the NYC metro area, and in the 40s even in the northernmost areas. This will put a damper (An intentional pun, because what else am I going to do?) on many people’s hopes for skiing that day.

Slightly better news late in the day Saturday as cooler weather arrives from the west, and precipitation may turn over to freezing rain, sleet, or even snow. The changeover is likeliest in the Tug Hill area, the Adirondack High Peaks, northern VT, the White Mountains of NH, and basically all of Maine. Icing on roads in the Adirondacks and northern New England will make driving treacherous Sunday.

Sunday will still be a bummer for many, despite the cooler temperatures. After the expected rain Saturday, cover is likely to be nonexistent or just too wet to ski on.

North country weather predictions for Sunday are up in the air (another intentional pun), depending on the way the cool front intersects with remaining wet weather. There might be a sudden and significant (by which I mean several inches to a foot) accumulation of snow and sleet in isolated areas. If so, hopes for skiing will rebound, made more urgent by the prospect of additional rain/snow/ice in the late evening Monday and into Tuesday.

Thanks for reading. Carpe diem.

Jan. 1 2020 forecast

Nice looking ski at Prospect Mountain:

New Year’s Day skiing (via Instagram)

Osceola got 3-4″ of snow overnight, Craftsbury made out pretty well, Rikert and Waterville Valley are good, and the Presidential range areas of Bretton Woods, Jackson XC, Bear Notch, and Great Glen are in terrific shape.

Forecast: The north country will receive a bit of additional snow through New Year’s day as the last of the winter storm passes to the northeast. Accumulation zones include the Tug Hill plateau and the mountain regions of NY, VT, and NH. Temperatures in the northern and mountain areas will afford spring skiing-like weather for a couple of days.

The tri-state region and Hudson valley up to the southern Catskills will be dry until more wet weather arrives from the south on Thursday evening. Friday will be rainy- more rain in the southern regions, a bit less far north.

Friday night temps will be above freezing throughout the northeast except for isolated areas, preventing any refreeze of the snowpack. On Saturday winds will shift northwesterly and bring chillier weather for Saturday night. Any remaining precipitation could shift to snow in the north country. Isolated areas could experience gusty winds.

You know what that means- some of the base could turn to ice. So that’s extra work for the groomers, and maybe calling for the Ginzugroomer.

Sunday will be much cooler than Saturday, with temperatures that will feel wintry. Possible snow in areas from the mid-Hudson region northward in the first half of next week. Daytime temperatures of higher and northern areas will be in the low- to mid-thirties through Tuesday, with nighttime lows below freezing.

Once again, freelancers and the retirees will have the better options over those of workweek warriors.