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Alps & Pyrenees Snow Thread 2015/16


J10

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It is that time of year again as we move into November, and thoughts turn to Skiing and snow conditions over the Alps and Pyrenees.

 

This thread will primarily be focussed on the Alps, however you are more than welcome to discuss conditions further afield. So you are more than welcome to discuss conditions elsewhere in mainland Europe, up in Scotland or even over the pond in USA and Canada.

 

Please get involved, and keep this one of the liveliest and friendliest forums on Net Weather.

 

A few starters for tens, wheat are everyone’s thoughts about this ski season.

 

-      Will the hot weather this summer over much of mainland Europe have any impact for the snow this winter.

 

-      Will last year trend of Saturday snow continue

 

-      Are there any resorts that you would like featured this winter where are you going and when.

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Posted
  • Location: Hadleigh, Suffolk
  • Weather Preferences: An Alpine climate - snowy winters and sunny summers
  • Location: Hadleigh, Suffolk

Great to have the thread back Julian! For us winter sports fanatics there's nothing better than watching the mountains turn white during November, ideally setting a good base for the coming season.

 

Unfortunately for the next week or two it's looking rather mild for the Alps. This week the Alps will have to endure the 15C isotherm at 850 hPa, so exceptionally warm conditions. It's not until the far reaches of FI that GFS hints at the Euro high finally slipping away east to be replaced by lower pressure and the 0C isotherm.

 

So fingers crossed that the last week of November will see the big switch from current conditions. We don't want a repeat of last year's newspaper headlines on the 8th Dec "Don't panic yet about lack of snow"!!

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Posted
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks

nothing showing on GFS data outputs which the link below use even at 8000ft out to the end of the forecast for my area of interest

 

http://www.meteocentrale.ch/en/europe/switzerland/weather-lauberhorn/details/S067291/#trend

 

73 days to the race and nothing to show yet-last year was about the same around this time.

http://www.lauberhorn.ch/en/?langId=2

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Posted
  • Location: Ski Amade / Pongau Region. Somtimes Skipton UK
  • Weather Preferences: Northeasterly Blizzard and sub zero temperatures.
  • Location: Ski Amade / Pongau Region. Somtimes Skipton UK

Good Morning all,

 Good to see this topic up and running again Julian. Fantastic weather here at the moment. The ski-ing season seems and million miles away. Lifts due to open in 26 days. Cannot see that happening at the moment. The ground is just tinder dry and brown. The picture is taken earlier this morning at the lower lift station at altitude of 1000m in the valley bottom. Got to -7c last night there in the frost hollow, so snow blowers were tested. Presently 10c this morning further up the mountain here in the village at 1650m. Freezing level  at over 3500m today. So patience is the name of the game, we need a base to work with. There is talk of much colder condition here in the second half of the month with snowfall. Fingers crossed.

I have a trip booked to Inner Alpbach, returning after nearly 40 years. I remember it well with all its tradition wooden buildings. Later a week in nearby Obertauren for some high level touring. Have to say Katschberg has quite a few visitors coming out from the UK , mainly with Neilson or independent. Its a fantastic little resort with great ski -in/ski out location and high altitude.

 

All the best,

 C

post-3489-0-21313600-1446546741_thumb.jp

Edited by carinthian
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Posted
  • Location: Hadleigh, Suffolk
  • Weather Preferences: An Alpine climate - snowy winters and sunny summers
  • Location: Hadleigh, Suffolk

Over the last few days the GFS has been throwing out one or two great charts for way out in FI that would transform the depressingly snow-free mountains of the Alps. Take this beauty from this morning's 0z run for the 19th Nov. It would bring the first major snowfall of the season, certainly for the Northern Alps:

 

post-20040-0-24340800-1446753463_thumb.p

 

Unfortunately it's out at a range (10 day +) where GFS verification stats are down to 20%.

 

And a quick check of how the GFS/ECM 500 hPa mean height anomalies look at days 8-10 show high pressure more likely to still be in charge of Europe.

 

post-20040-0-00427700-1446754559_thumb.g

 

Today's webcam panorama from up on the Kitzsteinhorn glacier in Austria shows just how little snow is around, even up there! Let's hope the long-range nose of the GFS has sniffed a change in the air!

 

post-20040-0-36885000-1446754793_thumb.j

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Posted
  • Location: Hadleigh, Suffolk
  • Weather Preferences: An Alpine climate - snowy winters and sunny summers
  • Location: Hadleigh, Suffolk

The first ski race casualty of the season. The FIS have just made the decision to cancel the opening slalom in Levi, Finland, due to lack of snow.

 

The Snowcontrol this Thursday morning has delivered its verdict: no slaloms in Finland this year on 14 and 15 November.

Finally, there was no miracle. The info has just fallen: FIS cancels the first slalom of the season, scheduled on 14 and 15 November in Levi. Black was white and just not so cold as expected temperatures forced the organizers to give up, as was the case in 2011. ..........The first slalom of the season should now take place, for men in Val d'Isere on December 13.

 

post-20040-0-64760300-1446797880_thumb.j

 

http://www.ledauphine.com/skichrono/2015/11/05/coupe-du-monde-les-slaloms-de-levi-annules

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Posted
  • Location: Ski Amade / Pongau Region. Somtimes Skipton UK
  • Weather Preferences: Northeasterly Blizzard and sub zero temperatures.
  • Location: Ski Amade / Pongau Region. Somtimes Skipton UK

Yep, not looking good. Talk here is of a delayed start to our season. Maybe the latest ECM prog gives us some hope of a change to snowier conditions. It still a long way off and a base has to be prepared and takes some time to form.

C

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Posted
  • Location: Tullynessle/Westhill
  • Weather Preferences: Cold and snowy or warm and dry
  • Location: Tullynessle/Westhill

Yep, not looking good. Talk here is of a delayed start to our season. Maybe the latest ECM prog gives us some hope of a change to snowier conditions. It still a long way off and a base has to be prepared and takes some time to form.

C

 

Well I've already started the snow dances. It'd be nice this year to be heading out to St.Anton on Boxing Day knowing there was already oodles of snow on the slopes. Unlike last year in France when we had an unexpected overnight in a 'shelter' in Albertville on our way to La Plagne on Dec 27th. Not that we complained too much, that snowfall made the holiday and we had 5 days of skiing on sunny mountains.

 

Even if the temperatures would drop a bit to allow some snow-making, that'd be a start.

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Posted
  • Location: Ski Amade / Pongau Region. Somtimes Skipton UK
  • Weather Preferences: Northeasterly Blizzard and sub zero temperatures.
  • Location: Ski Amade / Pongau Region. Somtimes Skipton UK

Well I've already started the snow dances. It'd be nice this year to be heading out to St.Anton on Boxing Day knowing there was already oodles of snow on the slopes. Unlike last year in France when we had an unexpected overnight in a 'shelter' in Albertville on our way to France on Dec 27th. Not that we complained too much, that snowfall made the holiday and we had 5 days of skiing on sunny mountains.

 

Even if the temperatures would drop a bit to allow some snow-making, that'd be a start.

Lets hope that dance is productive ! 1981, I last skied in The Lechtal Alps and what a wonderful ski area that is. Based in Lech we skied over to Zurs. Never made to descent in St Anton over the Valluga, must be a challenging run. Looks like good time to go to party town, hope the snow arrives 1

C

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Posted
  • Location: Ski Amade / Pongau Region. Somtimes Skipton UK
  • Weather Preferences: Northeasterly Blizzard and sub zero temperatures.
  • Location: Ski Amade / Pongau Region. Somtimes Skipton UK

I managed to skip the Alpes' horrible December.last year, not wanting this to happen again...

Where are you going to ?

C

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Posted
  • Location: Shoeburyness, SE Essex
  • Weather Preferences: Cool clear sunny weather all year.
  • Location: Shoeburyness, SE Essex

Well I've already started the snow dances. It'd be nice this year to be heading out to St.Anton on Boxing Day knowing there was already oodles of snow on the slopes. Unlike last year in France when we had an unexpected overnight in a 'shelter' in Albertville on our way to La Plagne on Dec 27th. Not that we complained too much, that snowfall made the holiday and we had 5 days of skiing on sunny mountains.

 

Even if the temperatures would drop a bit to allow some snow-making, that'd be a start.

Lucky man.

I have a very fond attachment to St Anton....

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Posted
  • Location: Ski Amade / Pongau Region. Somtimes Skipton UK
  • Weather Preferences: Northeasterly Blizzard and sub zero temperatures.
  • Location: Ski Amade / Pongau Region. Somtimes Skipton UK

Picture of the black run piste this morning. Due to open in 3 weeks ? Not a snow patch in sight. The top of that run is at altitude of 2150m ( Katschberg)

C

post-3489-0-99586100-1446887921_thumb.jp

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Posted
  • Location: Twickenham or roving in Alps
  • Weather Preferences: snow
  • Location: Twickenham or roving in Alps

Good to see the thread back - will try and contribute more this year. In my opinion, there is always too much panic about lack of snow at this time of year. There have been plenty of great winters that haven't got going properly until well into December. Last year's bad start (where some resorts had no snow at all until after Christmas) was exceptional - a once in a generation event for the north-western Alps. Things can and often do change very quickly and there have been signs of a pattern change towards week 3 of November for some time (no guarantees of course). 

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Posted
  • Location: Hadleigh, Suffolk
  • Weather Preferences: An Alpine climate - snowy winters and sunny summers
  • Location: Hadleigh, Suffolk

I really don't like making this sort of post, but clearly the Austrians are worried about both the present lack of snow prospects for their ski resorts this November and the longer term prospects. These extracts from the Osterreich Wetter website:

 

Austria is warmer than Spain

Mega-heat in the summer, still 23 degrees in the fall! What many suspect is likely to be fairly clear: blame the crazy weather in 2015 on climate change.

Already in the past 100 years, according to researchers, the temperature in Austria has increased by two degrees. By 2050 we are likely to once again
see another increase by two degrees. "That's significantly more than the global average," says climate expert Adam Pawloff of Greenpeace.

Rockfalls, mudslides and landslides threaten
Dangerous: Because even the permafrost decreases ever further into the mountains, bringing the risk for mudslides, landslides and rockfalls to increase.

Experts view:

Q: 23C degrees in early November: climate change?
Adam Pawloff: Individual events cannot be clearly attributed to climate change. One can very well determine, however: The frequency of these extreme weather conditions has increased significantly. Climate change thus has influence.

Q: What do you predict for Austria?
Pawloff: As an alpine country, we will be able to see the effects well. The snow line could then hike up 300 to 600 meters higher by the end of the century.

 

post-20040-0-74748800-1446933659_thumb.j
Picture: Kitzbüheler Horn: instead of snow temperatures are predicted for the weekend of 19 degrees.

 

Full story in Austrian: http://www.wetter.at/wetter/oesterreich-wetter/Oesterreich-ist-waermer-als-Spanien/211091619

 

But there was a slightly more positive note in this post on their website about a change in weather later this month that could "quiet rapidly be very wintry", although they (like many on here!) urge caution about model accuracy at that range!

 

If it goes to the computerised weather models for the whole of Europe, then we are left with the high-pressure weather conditions for two weeks, to at least 18th November. Then it could, however, quite rapidly be very wintry, because a low over Scandinavia, according to current calculations would control icy polar air masses to us. A winter with snow would be the result. However, such long-term model forecasts are not very meaningful.

 

Full story in Austrian: http://www.wetter.at/wetter/oesterreich-wetter/Faellt-der-Winter-heuer-aus/210881218

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Posted
  • Location: Ski Amade / Pongau Region. Somtimes Skipton UK
  • Weather Preferences: Northeasterly Blizzard and sub zero temperatures.
  • Location: Ski Amade / Pongau Region. Somtimes Skipton UK

Just a reminder of how good it can get. Picture taken of the passing of a snow shower during the record snowy month of Feb 2014 in these parts.

C

post-3489-0-85143400-1447017977_thumb.jp

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Posted
  • Location: Twickenham or roving in Alps
  • Weather Preferences: snow
  • Location: Twickenham or roving in Alps

Some remarkable temperatures were recorded in the Alps yesterday including 19.5c in Val d'Isere (1850m) 10.5c at Weissfluhjoch above Davos (2691m) and 2.8c at the Aiguille du Midi (3842m)!

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Posted
  • Location: Shoeburyness, SE Essex
  • Weather Preferences: Cool clear sunny weather all year.
  • Location: Shoeburyness, SE Essex

Wow that is some serious warm temps, esp this time of the year..

However being the Alps, one major cold front and there is 1m snow everywhere and temps below freezing.

Unlike here, lol...

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Posted
  • Location: Hadleigh, Suffolk
  • Weather Preferences: An Alpine climate - snowy winters and sunny summers
  • Location: Hadleigh, Suffolk

While we wait patiently for the snow to arrive here in Europe, a quick glance across the pond shows many resorts in the Canadian Rockies enjoying a snowy week.

 

Whistler is due to get a further metre of snow between now and Sunday! Lucky them! Here's a couple of webcam pics from today and the forecast for the week:

 

post-20040-0-81950500-1447186884_thumb.j post-20040-0-82262800-1447186901_thumb.j post-20040-0-58888800-1447186924_thumb.j

 

 

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Posted
  • Location: North of Glasgow 105 msl
  • Location: North of Glasgow 105 msl

While we wait patiently for the snow to arrive here in Europe, a quick glance across the pond shows many resorts in the Canadian Rockies enjoying a snowy week.

 

Whistler is due to get a further metre of snow between now and Sunday! Lucky them! Here's a couple of webcam pics from today and the forecast for the week:

 

attachicon.gifWhistler Tues 10Nov15.jpg attachicon.gifWhistler2 Tues 10Nov15.jpg attachicon.gifWhistler Forecast.jpg

Hi B.W. Great pics

Most of the snow will be rain at the base, top of the solar coaster 4000ft up from the base

that said hope we get some action in the alps....before xmas!

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Posted
  • Location: Ski Amade / Pongau Region. Somtimes Skipton UK
  • Weather Preferences: Northeasterly Blizzard and sub zero temperatures.
  • Location: Ski Amade / Pongau Region. Somtimes Skipton UK

Some remarkable temperatures were recorded in the Alps yesterday including 19.5c in Val d'Isere (1850m) 10.5c at Weissfluhjoch above Davos (2691m) and 2.8c at the Aiguille du Midi (3842m)!

Yes, its crazy warmth over here at the moment in the Alps, especially the Southern Alps . The latest 850mb height temperature profile shows how warm the air is at (aprox 1500m/ 5000ft. This is confirmed in Katschberg, the temp in the village is presently 10C at 1650m )

C

post-3489-0-72073400-1447237047_thumb.gi

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First vaguely encouraging signs that the Euro high is being replaced by at least the potential for precipitation 144hrs+. Next worry will be rain/snow level  and precip amounts but latest GFS seems to point to lows tracking on a far more southerly trajectory. Just need to get the angle running more NW/SE now...

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Posted
  • Location: Hadleigh, Suffolk
  • Weather Preferences: An Alpine climate - snowy winters and sunny summers
  • Location: Hadleigh, Suffolk

First vaguely encouraging signs that the Euro high is being replaced by at least the potential for precipitation 144hrs+. Next worry will be rain/snow level  and precip amounts but latest GFS seems to point to lows tracking on a far more southerly trajectory. Just need to get the angle running more NW/SE now...

 

A very warm welcome to Netweather roundhouse and for making your first post in the Alps & Pyrenees Snow Thread!  :)

 

And an excellent first post too that sums the situation up nicely. Thankfully the models are finally starting to show colder and more unsettled weather increasingly getting down to the Alps, but extreme caution needed as the best charts are still out at a range where they could disappear into thin air! Whilst there could be a dusting from this weekend for some high northern resorts, it's the following weekend that looks really interesting if it happens, with the end of this afternoon's GFS run even seeing a Low across the Alps. But as you point out, freezing levels likely to be an issue and benefiting higher resorts. One to watch and all fingers crossed for a good outcome!

 

Sat 21st Nov 850hPa post-20040-0-83981400-1447354708_thumb.p Precipitation post-20040-0-66466200-1447354719_thumb.p

 

Fri 27th Nov 850hPa post-20040-0-46264600-1447354736_thumb.p Precipitation post-20040-0-98528000-1447354745_thumb.p

 

P.S.Would you mind popping your location details into your profile please. Thks.

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Posted
  • Location: Hadleigh, Suffolk
  • Weather Preferences: An Alpine climate - snowy winters and sunny summers
  • Location: Hadleigh, Suffolk

Snowfall could be in abundance for higher resorts and slopes this winter if the long-range forecasts are to be believed. The seasonal forecasts from the Austrian and Germany weather services are going for a higher probability of a milder winter but with above average precipitation thanks to frequent low pressure impacting Europe. Some extracts from the article published on the Osterreich Wetter.at website today.

How is our winter? Mild and rainy, if one compares the most recent season forecasts of meteorological services. The latest weather model of the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) says Europe a very mild winter with more precipitation expected than in the long-term average.  .....which suggests numerous lows from the Atlantic.

In any case, the Americans are with their prognosis are in good company: The Austrian Central Institute for Meteorology and Geodynamics (ZAMG) estimates the probability of above-average temperatures in December and January with 60 percent. The German Weather Service (DWD) comes to a similar conclusion: With about 55 percent the chances are estimated that the 2015/16 winter is milder than normal.

 

Full article in Austrian, including temperature and rainfall anomaly charts: http://www.wetter.at/wetter/oesterreich-wetter/Wetter-Prognosen-Rekord-Winter-im-Anmarsch/211731973

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Posted
  • Location: Tullynessle/Westhill
  • Weather Preferences: Cold and snowy or warm and dry
  • Location: Tullynessle/Westhill

I posted this over in Model Moans thread in response to a 'got to get the interesting charts out of FI' type post, but it's equally as relevant here.

 

For purely selfish reasons though i.e. we have a ski holiday booked for end Dec, I've been keeping a close eye on the precipitation forecasts across the Alps, mainly western Austria. For quite a few days now it's been showing virtually no precipitation before the 19th Nov, thereafter becoming a fairly regular occurrence. As I said, the 19th turning point has been a consistent theme for a few days, so that at least seems to be slowly moving into the reliable timeframe. If that is correct and we see the demise of the Euro high, then maybe some of the more interesting charts of late might just materialise.
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