• The Chatel Snow Report

19/12/2019: Today's Updates... Day 8 Of The 2019/20 Season...

8.05pm:

A look at this evening's models suggest 3 main points of interest...

1/ Snow appears to be possible at village elevation tomorrow evening if the hi-res Arome model is to be believed, perhaps bringing a few cm's and a useful fall of snow higher up. More on this on the forecast update in the morning.

2/ Sunday still has the chance to be very snowy. Snow/rain limits remain uncertain, however, a significant snowfall is possible for most, if not all, of the Chatel ski area. Caution is still advised as small changes in those snow/rain limits will have huge implications on the ground - the difference between a winter wonderland and a washout.

3/ The period beyond Monday remains very uncertain. The GFS model has trended away from a complete Christmas Eve washout to what appears to be a rain to snow event, whereas the ECMWF has edged a little way from its suggestions of this morning.


...to be resumed on the early updates tomorrow...


3.05pm:

The weather is lovely here in Chatel today with warm sunshine, so those on the ski area should be seeing something a bit like spring conditions in places.


We have been posting to the WhatsApp group in the last hour regarding the upcoming rain and snow events and the huge differences which are showing in the models, especially from Monday next week.


As it stands today, there may be some snowfall tomorrow night, mostly above the village, however, a covering for the village is a possibility - more on this later.


Thereafter, several models suggest some really large amounts of precipitation are on the way for the period from Saturday night to early Monday with perhaps over 100mm of rain equivalent precipitation, so that is either 10cm of rain or 1m of snow! Snow/rain limits may come down low enough on Sunday to help the lowest snow starved sections of the ski area - more on this later.


Following that - you may have noticed that some of the automated apps and websites are suggesting a washout for most of the ski area on Christmas Eve, whereas others are suggesting a much colder spell developing. The reason for the difference is that the GFS model which powers most of these automated sites is showing the milder Christmas Eve scenario, whilst the colder scenario is being shown by the fewer sites which use the ECMWF model as an input. The reason why most sites use GFS is not because it is better, but because its data is FREE! So be wary when an automated website powered by GFS is asking for cash to unlock its extended outlook - as most of that info is available for free elsewhere if you know where to look!


Just to highlight the huge differences in the outlooks being shown by these 2 models - below are their 192hr charts from the early runs this morning from www.meteociel.fr


It is impossible to know which will be right - it could be either of them or there may be some sort of half way house between the 2.


So - the message today is to treat all automated output for next week with a huge pinch of salt.



6.30am:

Bonjour from Chatel. Clear skies have brought a touch of ground frost to the valley this morning and a noticeable re-freeze of the snow pack. Current air temperature in the village is around 1c.


... ... more info on this will be posted on today's forecast page at... http://www.chatelweb.com/chatel_snow_forecast.php - which should be online around 8am, followed by further updates on this page today.



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