NOAA is forecasting a storm to hit California next weekend with the potential for heavy mountain snow and big wind.
NOAA has even used the words “Atmostpheric River” and they said that it could be the beginning of a snowy pattern:
"A classic AR [Atomspheric River] landfall scenario... So next weekends storm may be just the beginning. A much needed boost to the snowpack after lackluster February." - NOAA Reno, NV today
We’ve got our fingers crossed since February was a total bust in California with record heat and only one storm that brought about 2-feet of snow.
“Simulations show storms making landfall into California and Nevada next weekend with potential for heavy mountain snows and strong winds area wide. There is still considerable variability in storm track and intensity, so be sure to monitor the weather forecasts if you have travel plans next weekend.” – NOAA Reno, NV today
“Models continue to advertise a return to a wetter weather pattern beginning the end of this week and continuing into the 2nd week of March. How much rain and snow for NorCal? Too early to tell so stay tuned!” – NOAA Sacramento, CA today
Confidence continues to increase in a pattern change back to wetter weather for Northern California! The timing currently appears to be late next weekend. This graphic summarizes what we know, and what we’ll be ironing out in the coming days.”- NOAA Sacramento, CA today
Into the weekend is when the main course likely arrives, however there are appreciable timing and track differences. ECMWF has storm onset as early as Sat evening, while GFS is Sunday afternoon. Also the GFS is sending a bit of the storm energy into SoCal, while ECMWF is more of a direct hit for N Cal. A classic AR [Atomspheric River] landfall scenario, the ECMWF would also bring in fairly strong winds to the region. So overall we have increasing confidence in seeing a storm of some flavor next weekend, but low confidence in the key details. Much too soon to speculate on snow/rain and wind numbers, but what we can say is for anyone with travel plans next weekend it will be critical to monitor weather forecasts. Latest GEFS and CFS weekly guidance continues to show a pattern favorable for storms into CA/NV mid to late March, with lessening confidence after the 19th. So next weekends storm may be just the beginning. A much needed boost to the snowpack after lackluster February. - NOAA, today