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8 Feet of Snow in the Past Week, More in the Forecast /

Submitted by ba March 19, 2012 - 7:43pm Weather

Squaw ended up with a total of 8 feet over the past week.  That is on top of the 3 feet from the first week of the month bringing the total for March up to 130 inches.  That makes a miracle March so far as we had only picked up 142 inches for the entire season prior to March.  The month isn't over yet and we will have 3 more chances at seeing a storm before the end of the month.

There is another storm approaching the Pacific NW that will move in on Tuesday. Warmer air coming up ahead of the storm will override the cold air in place and some light snow showers could break out tonight into Tuesday not expecting more than a dusting of snow. The ridge off the coast will continue to build in toward CA through the middle of the week with temperatures warming back into the 40's and 50's by Wednesday.

Another storm will move into the Pacific NW on Thursday flattening the ridge but most of the precip will still stay to the North of Tahoe. We could see a few light snow showers on the mountains and some light rain/snow showers at lake level. Although the weather will stay unsettled we won't see any accumulating snow through Friday as the big snows stay to the North.

Then the trough will dig down off the coast as the ridge builds in over the West. It looks like the trough will cut off from the jet stream forming a cut-off low off the coast by Friday. This time of year we tend to start seeing lots of cut-off lows as the jet stream begins to retract North in the Spring. These lows have nothing pushing or steering them so their track is hard to predict and then can move very slowly. The slow part can be good for a prolonged period of snowfall.

The ridge over the West will try to keep the low from spinning inland but it looks like the next storm coming across the Pacific will help to start pushing it inland over the weekend. Some forecast models show the low pushing in Saturday and slowly spinning across CA through Monday and others Sunday through Tuesday. The question is how weakened will the low be and how much moisture will it have when it comes in.  Right now models show anything from a foot up to 3 feet over the 3 day period.

The next upstream system that helps to push the first one inland may move in right on the heels of the first next Wednesday. Some forecast models show it becoming a cut-off low as well but coming inland by Thursday as the first storm has cleared the way and another storm behind it will help to push it inland. Another storm is right behind that and could push in by Saturday the 31st.

We will have to continue to watch the track of the systems next week to see how far South they end up coming and how much precip they can bring into Tahoe.  BA

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