There’s good news and bad news when I look at the snowpack along the west coast. Let’s start with the good news as Tahoe finally saw a hefty dose of snow last weekend with 2-3 FEET falling across the higher peaks. The other piece of good news is that British Columbia will see many FEET of snow during the next seven to 10 days with multiple storms poised to move into the region from the Pacific Ocean.
The less-than-stellar news is that the current snowpack in Tahoe, Oregon and Washington is hovering around 50 percent of average for this time of year. Since these regions are close to the big moisture source of the Pacific Ocean, it only takes a one- to two-week shift in the weather pattern for storms to drop enough snow to move the needle back toward average. However, almost all of the action during the next week will be far to the north, with the coast and interior sections of British Columbia seeing the heavy snow while little falls to the south in the United States.
If you’re looking for powder along the west coast, head north of the border and enjoy the deep powder of British Columba. If you’re looking for snow closer to home, I’m afraid that you’ll have to wait at least one or two weeks... or more, as I don’t see any large changes in the storm track between now and Christmas.
That said, enjoy the snow you have and hope for more!
Joel Gratz is a Meteorologist and the creator of OpenSnow.com.