Weather by Tim Kelley
If it was easy, it would not be so fun!
Forecasting the weather, specifically for Jay Peak, is one of the greatest challenges, and most rewarding things I’ve done in my life.
In my brief tenure here, I think this winter may top them all.
It looked like our ski season was doomed several times, and it kept bouncing back.
This week is no exception.
We had midwinter beauty to start the week. Then a couple of days of great corn snow with sunshine before our regularly scheduled Thursday Front brought in a dose of warmer damp weather. It’s about the third week in a row with the same timing.
But this week was a little different, we actually had the coldest Friday morning since Friday, March 11.
So when the precipitation came in, and it was a healthy dose, it was not all rain. It was bouncy ice for much of Thursday night on the mountain. Yes, that is sleet. Just to our south though, it rained on the mountains with a temperature of 30°.
So we really didn’t lose much snow pack. There’s still some deep enough snow at the top of the mountain to get into the glades. But I’m not sure how soft it's going to be this weekend. It may stay freezing cold, which would keep things a bit firm. But that’s only at the top of the mountain. At the base lodges the temperature is going to be in the 30s to low 40s.
A huge upper level pool of cool is going to slowly pass over the Northeast Kingdom this weekend. There’s an additional low pressure system that is going to intensify and track right up the Connecticut River Valley Saturday afternoon. So we can expect the unexpected.
What I am expecting is an afternoon full of varying precipitation. It may be raining down in the village, and pouring snow on the mountain for a few hours Saturday afternoon.
April showers to the nth degree.
The snow level will gradually come down the mountain all the way to the base overnight Saturday.
Sunday looks like a snow day. The wind is going to pick up from the northwest and it will probably snow much of the day. A few inches, maybe even a half a foot at the summit by sunset Sunday.
Monday morning we have a hard freeze, so that should give us a nice start for more corn snow next week.
The forecast for next week is also challenging. There’s a lot of cold air in Canada and a lot of warm air across the southeastern United States. We may have a little wintry mix here Tuesday, and probably on the warmer side Wednesday. Then a cold Front will come in again Thursday and Friday of course.
That will set the stage for perhaps another wintry weekend and we may have fresh powder here for our Easter sunrise services.
I know that’s a long way out.
For a winter with relatively low snowfall. The timing has been impeccable to bring us back to life several times. I’m not sure how long the mountain is going to stay open, but this is my last report for the season.
There is a stratospheric warming event happening over the north pole, and we have the Greenland block setting up. So I expect that ski season has several more weeks. In this winter that just will not quit.
It’s been a pleasure, hopefully I’ll be back next year!
Surf is up too, see you at the beach!
-Tim Kelley aka TK