• The Chatel Snow Report

17/11/2018:The Hunt For A Snowy Chart Continues...

As the title suggests, this morning's mission is to find any convincing signs of some significant snowfall in the outlook and at the moment, to find anything that can be described as convincing is practically impossible.

The models all suggest very little in the way of precipitation coming this way in the next 7 days. Yes, there are hints of a little bit of snow arriving next week, along with some really quite cold air (which should allow snow making to begin), but the indications for now suggest little more than a dusting for the Chatel area. The Arpege model is perhaps the most keen to bring some snowfall for the area, as shown on the chart below from the excellent Meteociel.fr website, which suggests something a bit more useful falling further to our west, however, that should be taken with a large pinch of salt at this stage. There is a glimmer of hope that we could see several cm's in Chatel, but that is the less favoured option at the moment.

Looking further ahead and the models diverge this morning as they head out towards the 6 to 10 day period, but the issue continues to be that none are really showing any convincing signs of the arrival of significant snowfall. The snowiest chart that we found this morning was way out into the beginning of December, which is so far away that it is pointless posting it.

A look at this morning's operational runs from 3 of the major global models shows a fairly unusual pattern developing next week, with high pressure over Scandinavia and towards Iceland, however, the recent trend being shown by these models is for less of a signal for retrogression of the high pressure towards Greenland. Instead, there is potentially more of an extension of the high into SE Europe. This development shuts the door on any potential plunge of Arctic air, which we might have seen if there had been genuine retrogression showing in the charts, with a much messier and less cold pattern emerging, which could see some precipitation here, but that is by no means a foregone conclusion, with drier (and milder) options also on the potential menu.

With the noticeable differences in the models at the 144hr timeframe shown above, there remains a chance of a more favourable pattern emerging as we head into the last days of this month and early December, but until there are convincing signs of this actually happening, the hunt for significantly snowy charts goes on.

Remember, the term significant snowfall is a snowfall that will enable the resort to open.

What is absent in the charts at the moment, is a rather more normal, mobile, westerly, Atlantic dominated weather pattern, which is from where most of our snowfall comes from.

One other issue, which is a potential elephant in the room, is the water situation, or rather the lack of water situation! After an incredibly dry summer and autumn, many streams in the area are dry. We see this daily, as our normal trail running routes cross some of these streams and they are all bone dry. The good news is that the snow cannon reservoirs are currently full but there has to be a question mark as to whether a sustained period of snow making can take place. One resort in the Haute Savoie has already announced that it will be conserving some water that was earmarked for snowmaking, to secure drinking supplies for the season, so this topic will be one to watch.

In summary... - the chance of significant snowfall in the next 7 days is currently low. - the chance of significant snowfall in the 7 to 10 day period is better than low, but there are still no convincing signs of it actually happening!

As often mentioned, the charts can flip flop to a very different outlook, so stay tuned.

Bye for now... next update expected to be this evening...

All charts above copyright Meteociel.fr

How you can help this season... you will notice on some pages that there is a PayPal tip/donation box, eg on the "About Us" page, where you can send us a tip, if you like what we are doing. There is no obligation to do so, but any donations will help the running costs of this site during the winter season. 

Recent Posts

See All

12/04/2021: Today's Updates...

Update: 1.30pm: Overnight snowfall brought up to 6cm to the village - with less on other surfaces and alot of it has now thawed at this elevation. It was interesting to see more snow a few miles away