WEATHER UPDATE – The Cold is Coming

May 11th, 2012
  


line” /> We all know what we’re hoping for… This is Falls Creek, mid July 2010. Bring it on! Image:: Chris Hocking

Winter Countdown | The Grasshopper

Synchronise your watches. One month to go until the official opening of Season 2012 and it’s time to take a look at what sort of weather we can expect up until those lifts start turning.

May is always a difficult month for Australian snow lovers. Sitting around waiting for every little morsel of snow is like stalking a waiter for those impossibly small spring rolls at a wedding. You know you should just wait for the main course but you’re drunk and hungry and there are still the speeches to get through.

That pretty little blanket of late-April snow left us as quickly as it arrived and temperatures have been topping 10 degrees at most resorts over the last couple of day. But come this weekend we’re going to get another little taste as a low in the Tasman and a high in the Bight direct a sharp little southerly flow over the resorts. It’s only a few centimetres, but it could be a sign of things to come.

Another cold front should rocket through next weekend with some snow at higher levels and the Antarctic Oscillation has just flipped negative. This means the belt of strong westerlies south of Australia is pushing a little further north than normal, increasing the chances of cold fronts crossing the south-east of the continent.

There’s no way of telling how long the AAO will stay negative for – could be a few days or a few weeks – but my gut says that we should see a good procession of fast moving fronts through till opening weekend. This could be good or bad depending on your point of view. These fronts I’m talking about aren’t season starters. I’m envisaging mediocre “blink and you miss ’em five centimetres of fresh” suckers that should roll by every five to seven days. I doubt you’ll be heading off-piste on opening weekend, but there’s a good chance of a little soft blanket of white, and periods of cold air for the snowmakers to put on a show if they’re so inclined.

That’s all from the Grasshopper. As always, I’d love to be proved wrong by a big dump of snow, so if you’re seeing something I’m not then hit me up at grasshoppermw@gmail.com or http://www.facebook.com/grasshoppermw and share your wisdom. Daily forecasts start May 21.

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