Friday, December 26, 2014

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Wicked Wind of the East

Although not as evil as its counterpart, the Wicked Ridge of the West, the Wicked Wind of the East can do some serious damage to Sierra shred quality.  With no major snow forecast for the next week, I figured I would talk briefly about the wind and cold we will experience.

Check out the 700 mb winds (~10,000 ft.) forecast for Tuesday night.  There is a 50-60 knot core right over the Tahoe Sierra, with a wind direction of east-northeast. Yikes!  This will transport any remaining fresh snow from the favored northeast facing slopes onto the opposite side of the ridge. Not ideal.

(Source: RAP/UCAR)

This is associated with a massive ridge that is pumping up off the coast of BC into the Gulf of AK, and a deep trough digging down the east side of the ridge.

(Source: RAP/UCAR)

This pattern will bring some extremely cold and below average temperatures to nearly the entire CONUS.  The forecast temperatures for Tuesday night are shown below.  Look at all those negatives!  There will be widespread temps of -10 F to -20 F over the northern Rockies.


This wind/cold event is still about five days away, so details will likely change.  But models have been consistent in showing this feature.  One upside is that the nasty ridge is forecast to shift further north during the first week of January, which could allow storms to move back into the west coast.  That is out into fantasy land, so we will just keep our fingers crossed.


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