Bolton Valley, VT 23NOV2011

An image of fresh snow on an evergreen at Bolton Valley Resort in Vermont
Fresh snow from our pre-Thanksgiving storm coats an evergreen near the 2,800' elevation as I ascended Bolton Valley's Schuss trail today.

Our first big Northern Vermont storm of the season came in with a nice thump of snow during the overnight hours, and I awoke to find 7.1 inches of moderately dense snow on the snowboard for my 6:00 A.M. report to CoCoRaHS.  Later in the morning the National Weather Service Office in Burlington put out a map showing the overnight snow totals, but the snow was still coming down.  Snow continued to fall at the house all morning, and while it gradually tapered to very light snow, we picked up a few more inches to bring us into double digits for the storm total.

We played out in the snow for a while with the boys, and then in the mid afternoon I had to decide if I wanted to get out and make some turns in the new snow.  Ideally I was looking for a place where man-made snow had been put down as a base, but unfortunately most of the mountains that had been making snow were actually opening for lift-served skiing.  I thought about Sugarbush, since they aren’t opening until tomorrow, but they’ve been a bit testy with people earning turns in recent years and I didn’t want to drive over just to get turned away.

I eventually decided that I’d pop up to Bolton and see how the snow looked.  I wasn’t expecting much in terms of skiing without a prior base, but perhaps I’d be pleasantly surprised.  The temperature had gone a couple degrees above freezing at our house (elevation 495’), so the snow had been falling off the trees and the snow in the yard had also settled a bit.  As Powderfreak had mentioned, the snow accumulations really did fall off as I headed a couple of miles west past the Waterbury/Bolton line.  At the base of the Bolton Valley Access Road (340’) it was really amazing, there were just a couple inches of snow on the ground from the storm.  It had me really worried about what went on up at the mountain, but fortunately the snow depths began to increase as I climbed in elevation as usual.  Up at around 1,000’ near the Bolton Valley Resort sign, it looked like there were about 4 inches on the ground, and by the time I reached the Timberline base at 1,500’ it was notably deeper.  I stopped in near the lodge and did a quick measurement with my pole to reveal 8.5 inches of settled snow.  I saw one guy putting his skins on his skis for a tour, and noticed a couple of other cars that might have belonged to skiers, but I decided to head up to the main base area and see if things got a bit deeper.  While at the base of the access road the temperature had been a couple degrees above freezing just like at our house, it dropped to around the freezing mark by the Timberline base, and it was a couple degrees below freezing up at the village (2,100’).  As soon as I parked the car I checked the snow depth there, and found that it was about 10 inches.  To read the full report and check out the rest of the pictures, head to the Bolton Valley trip report from today.

First major winter storm of the season for Northern Vermont

An image of the Winter Weather Advisories and Warnings map from the National Weather Service in Burlington for November 22, 2011
Winter Weather Advisories are up throughout the state of Vermont for the upcoming storm

While the Northeast has already had a couple of big, snow-producing synoptic storms so far this season (one on October 27th, and another on October 29th), for Northern Vermont these events were fairly minor because the area was really on the fringe of the precipitation.  A storm is developing now however, which is expected to bring more substantial accumulations to the northern part of the state.  This storm is expected to head into the Ohio Valley later today, and then track east across Southern New England overnight.  This storm may have some mixed precipitation with it, but the current forecasts do not indicated much mixing in the northern areas, and the chance is there for greater than 6 inches of snowfall.  For a few more details, part of my morning report to the New England Regional Forum at American Weather is added below:

It was 17.6F and dropping when I left the house this morning around 6:00 AM, so this will certainly come in as the coldest morning of the season at our location thus far.  I flipped on The Weather Channel before I left the house, and was surprised to see that the local forecast called for 6 to 10 inches at the Winter Weather Advisory level, but after reading the BTV forecast discussion, they spoke of the potential for mixing keeping totals down.  The current point and click for our area down in the valley calls for 4 to 9 inches of snow, but doesn’t mention any mixing at this point.

Graphical point forecast for our location in Waterbury from the National Weather Service in Burlington for November 22, 2011
Snow is expected from tonight through Wednesday night, even for our location down in the Winooski Valley.

Today: Sunny, with a high near 34. Calm wind.

Tonight: Snow, mainly after 1am. Low around 24. South wind at 6 mph becoming north. Chance of precipitation is 90%. New snow accumulation of 1 to 2 inches possible.

Wednesday: Snow, mainly before 4pm. High near 35. North wind between 3 and 8 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. New snow accumulation of 3 to 7 inches possible.

Wednesday Night: A chance of snow showers, mainly before 7pm. Partly cloudy, with a low around 20. North wind around 6 mph becoming calm. Chance of precipitation is 30%.

I didn’t really see much of a bump in the point forecasts for the local mountains, so we’ll have to see if that gets refined for the higher elevations.  I’ve added the projected snow accumulations map from National Weather Service Office in Burlington below:

An image of the projected snowfall accumulations for the upcoming November snowstorm in Vermont
The National Weather Service projected snowfall accumulations map for the northern portions of Vermont and New York as of the early morning on November 22, 2011

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2011 – Afternoon Update

The National Weather Service Office in Burlington has put out their afternoon update for snow accumulations, and our area has been upgraded to a Winter Storm Warningto reflect the potential snowfall.  The latest advisory and projected accumulations maps have been added below:

An image of the afternoon updagte for the Winter Weather Advisories and Warnings map from the National Weather Service in Burlington for November 22, 2011
Winter Weather Advisories have now been upgraded to Winter Storm Warnings in some parts of Vermont and Northern New York to reflect the anticipated snow accumulations.

 

An afternoon update the projected snowfall accumulations for the upcoming November snowstorm in Vermont
The afternoon update for expected snowfall from the National Weather Service in Burlington

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2011 – Evening Update

This evening, Matt Noyes posted his latest snowfall prediction map for this storm, and he’s pretty bullish on some of the totals in Northern New England, including parts of Northern Vermont.  I’ve added his map below:

Matt Noyes' snowfall map for Northern New England snowstorm on November 22, 2011
Matt Noyes’ snowfall map for Northern New England with the upcoming storm

For more full details on this storm, head to the detailed report at the winter weather section of our website.

November snows starting to accumulate in Vermont

An image of November snow on the trees and ground up at Bolton Valley Resort in Vermont
A couple inches of snow greeted us on our Bolton Valley hike up at the 2,500′ elevation.

Just last week we had our first snows of November in Northern Vermont – Ty and I found that areas above 2,000’ still had snow when we were up at Bolton Valley last Sunday.  We got another round of snow yesterday, and this one was substantial enough that along with the mountains, many valleys got a coating as well.  We even picked up our first accumulation for the month at our house in Waterbury.  Today we were up at Bolton Valley picking up the rest of our season’s passes, and there was plenty of snow in the higher elevations.  The snow first appeared just above the base of Timberline at around the 1,600’ – 1,700’ elevation range, and by the time we were up around 2,500’ there was quite a solid coating of a couple inches.  The boys had fun making snowballs, and we had a great November hike.

An image of Dylan with a November snowball up at Bolton Valley Resort in Vermont
Dylan and a nice big snowball he rolled in the recent snow up at Bolton Valley

An image of Ty rolling a snowball at Bolton Valley Resort in Vermont after a November snowfall

More details on the storm associated with this snow can be found in the detailed report at the winter weather section of our website.