Published on Friday, January 6, 2017

Snow update

The snow just keeps on coming in North America but it's not such good news across the Alps. Here's this week's snow report. For more, go to Ski Club.

The big change has finally happened and snowy wintery conditions have made a huge return to the European Alps.

There is a big difference in what is happening around The Alps, and this is all to do with the direction these new storms have arrived from. The cold air flow is coming from the north countries on the northern side of the main ridge line that divides the entire European Alps range are getting all the snow, which means Austria, Germany and Switzerland. Here, these big storms will quickly drop their snow and disappear replaced immediately on Friday by sunny dry conditions.

In Austria, the storms will return again on Sunday and this time they should stay in place for most of next week bringing with them much needed steady reliable snow fall across Austria.

In Germany, sunny conditions will make a return from Friday. Over the weekend a mix of cloud and light snow will precede the next storm front, expected to arrive on the January 10. The new storm cycle is likely to bring excellent snowfalls right across our featured resorts, with half a metre expected between Tuesday Friday.

In Switzerland, predominantly sunny weather will replace storms and into the weekend it will be a mix of sun and cloud but no new snow is expected. The next big snowfalls are still forecast to begin on January 10. The snowfall numbers look good, but it is still early to call these forecasts reliable.

On the other side, the main Alps ridge in countries like France and Italy the news is not as good. Italy is on the wrong side of the main Alps Ridge line to get any significant snowfall from the current storms coming from the north. To make matters slightly worse, the strong winds are likely to bring a Foehn wind effect to some resorts, stripping away what little snow is currently on the ground on south facing slopes. Most resorts should expect mainly sunny skies over the weekend.

In France, conditions will remain much the same as they have been. Significant fresh snowfall is not expected until at least Tuesday. Until then expect clear dry sunshine to prevail.

The Pyrenees can expect the current sunny dry weather to continue, there is no significant snowfall forecast for the area.

In the far north Scandinavian ski areas can expect cloudy conditions with light to moderate snow forecast for much of the week.

Good news for Scotland, wintery conditions are apparent across the country and snow is on the forecast for Monday.

Recent days have seen a continuation of heavy snowfall in many North American resorts. Most of the biggest dumps have happened in California at resorts like Heavenly and Squaw, and in Colorado at resorts like Crested Butte and Aspen, as well as further south in Wolf Creek. Having said that, it seems unfair to single out these areas as resorts all across the continent continue to be showered with heavy snow. In Canada, Quebec has borne the brunt of the country's precipitation recently.

Things are actually set to intensify over the coming days with over a meter predicted to fall in California. Let's hope Europe takes a leaf out of the American book and delivers similar conditions.

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