The Grasshopper – The Latest Snow Forecast

The Grasshopper – The Latest Snow Forecast

Australian Forecast – More rain next few days as a low passes to the north


Valid Monday 26th September to Wednesday 28th September


Well folks, the next few days will bring periods of rain as a weak cut-off low passes just north of the Aussie Alps. Temperatures will be too warm for any real snow unfortunately, but there should be some windows of bright and dry weather for you keen beans to sneak in some good turns. Wednesday will perhaps be the worst of the bunch with the most persistent and heaviest falls expected, although if you happen to be under a thunderstorm on Tuesday afternoon it won’t be that pleasant either.


Latest pressure analysis and satellite image. Source: The BOM (vandalised by the Grasshopper)


Monday 26th

It’s not too bad out there at first light, with plenty of blue sky amongst the cloud, but conditions will gradually, and un-dramatically, deteriorate throughout the day as N-NW winds pick up. Rain spreads over Victoria this morning, and then over NSW from midday where not a great amount is expected and it’s likely to come and go.


Tuesday 27th

Showers, with heavy falls and thunderstorms possible during the afternoon. Light N-NW breezes, but there could be stronger gusts if you happen to be near a thunderstorm.


Wednesday 28th

More rain, darn it, perhaps even more persistent than previous days. We should see some heavy falls, and there is a chance of thunderstorms during the afternoon, although Buller won’t see much rain at all. Southeast winds becoming strong.


Extended Forecast

As the low spins off into the Tasman Sea, E-SE winds will persist over the Aussie Alps during Thursday and Friday, pushing in more showers and a cooler airmass, which should bring snow levels to at least mid slopes, possibly as low as 1500m for a time.


High pressure passing by to the south next weekend will see that winds drop off, bringing mostly fine weather for the last days of the season.


That’s all from me today, folks. It’s the last week of the season, and although the weather isn’t particularly nice, make the most of what’s out there because it’s a long time between turns otherwise. This week I’m sending out the forecasts Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Have a great day.



New Zealand Weekly Forecast, Sept 12 – Cold Front to Deliver Wintry Weather and Snow on Tuesday

Valid September 12th – Sunday September 18th

Wintry weather continues this week as a pair of cold fronts sweep up the country. While South Island fields from Mount Hutt to Coronet Peak may see healthy snowfall accumulations, Hanmer and North Island ski fields are more likely to miss out on the action.

Tuesday brings the best chance for a snow dump this week to southern fields and Mount Hutt as a front delivers a reinvigorating blast of cold air and southwesterly snow showers, with limited amounts further north. High pressure brings chilly temperatures, clearing skies and easing winds on Wednesday and Thursday across South Island with the potential for bluebird days, while Thursday is looking best for Ruapehu.

Another burst of cool air spreads across New Zealand during Friday, but this system is short-lived with only a few snow showers expected. The weekend starts off with another mint weather day for Mount Hutt down to Coronet Peak on Saturday, but increasing northerly winds on Sunday could bring deteriorating conditions on the slopes. For the North Island fields, later Saturday into Sunday is your best bet to see blue skies and light winds.


24-hour snowfall (in cm) for Tuesday 13th Sept. Source: MetService

Tuesday 13thSept

All eyes will be on the South Island ski fields, as cold air streams over the country and northwesterly rain is replaced by gusty southerlies and snow showers. The most significant snow totals are expected for Mount Hutt, but southern fields are still likely to see some accumulation in this cold snap.

Strong westerlies and rain for the North Island fields.

Wednesday 14th– Thursday 15thSept

Bluebird skies for South Island fields from Mount Hutt to Coronet Peak. Whakapapa and Turoa could see a few snow showers Wednesday, with their bluebird day delayed until Thursday.

Friday 16thSept

A weak cold front brings minor snow accumulation to South Island with increasing southwesterlies, while a northern low brings strengthening southeasterlies and the potential for rain across North Island.


Snapshot of precipitation and sea level pressure, valid midday Saturday 17th, and showing a likely bluebird day in the south, but continued southeasterly showers in the north. Source: MetService

Saturday 17thSept

High pressure brings mint skiing weather in the south, with a bluebird day likely from Mount Hutt southwards. A few showers for Ruapehu, potentially falling as snow at high-levels, with gusty southeasterlies gradually easing.

Sunday 18thSept

A front approaches South Island from the west with strengthening northerlies, though largely dry conditions are possible through the first half of the day. Easing winds and clearing skies for the Ruapehu fields brings the potential for a bluebird day.

Extended Outlook

A front crosses over during Monday 19th, bringing rain to all ski fields, though some of this may fall as snow at high-levels across South Island. This is followed by another cold outbreak as southwesterlies push across the country with a few snow showers possible through mid-next-week.

Japan Weekly Forecast, February 24 – After a Huge Week of Snow, Things Set to Quieten Down

Valid Thursday, Feb 24 – Wednesday, March 2

As expected, it has been another big week for the Central Honshu resorts with heavy snowfalls at times and some huge snow totals recorded with Myoko recording a massive 251cms in the past week, Nozawa Onsen 155cms, Shiga Kogen 129cms and Hakuba was a little behind on 77cms. The heaviest falls were from Monday to last night and for thiose lucky enough to be in Japan, the past three days have been ridiculously deep. Further North Niseko also saw consistently good days with a solid 122cms in the past week with Tuesday and Wednesday being the deepest days.

Most resorts had a good refresh last night, but things look to quieten down over the next week with light snow on Sunday across the Honshu resorts before things pick up mid-week. As you can see from the map below, the mountains in Central and Northern Honshu have the deepest potential snow while it is mellower further north on Hokkaido, but consistent snow showers are forecast from today through to Tuesday.


The latest 10-day ECMWF snowfall accumulation heatmap around Japan. Maximums here are around 30-50cms in Central Honshu. Source:


Thursday, Feb 24 – Friday, Feb 25

After some good snowfalls overnight in some areas the snow will ease today with flurries by this afternoon and light winds. Not much in it, possible 2cms. Snowfalls will continue in Hokkaido during the day easing tonight with and gusty westerly winds at times.

Light snowfalls on Friday should clear by the afternoon, again only a couple of cms in it and light winds. Snowfalls continue on Hokkaido, but totals will be small, around 5-6cms and stiff westerly winds at times

Saturday, Feb 26  – Sunday, Feb 27

Saturday morning is shaping up as a good day in Honshu with sunshine and light winds, with cloud developing late in the afternoon. Light snow in Hokkaido Increasing in the evening and the moderate to strong WNW winds continue.

Snowfalls increase early Sunday on Honshu and continue through the day, but nothing huge with 10cms excepted. and light NW winds. Snow showers again in Hokkaido with 10cm likely, but gusty westerly winds persisting.

Monday, Feb 28 – Wednesday, March 2

Snow flurries around Honshu throughout the day, west winds picking up in the afternoon. The run of snow continues in Hokkaido with another 5-10cm likely but once again winds will be moderate to string WNW.

Light snowfalls around Honshu on Tuesday morning picking up in the afternoon and continuing overnight with southwest winds, possible drizzle on lower slopes. Snow showers ease across Hokkaido, but moderate westerly winds persist, easing a little after darks.

A few snow showers persist on Wednesday morning across Honshu, easing the afternoon with another 5-10cms possible. The snow showers finally clear in Hokkaido with potential for sunshine and the winds easing a little during the day.

Extended Outlook

After the heavy snowfalls of the past few days things ease across Honshu, but there are still a few cheeky powder days ahead with Sunday and Tuesday looking good for some boot-deep pow although milder conditions could see some rain down low.

In Hokkaido it’s looking like 5-15cms daily over the next four or five days with persistent moderate winds before the sun makes a return on Wednesday.

That break in snowfalls next Wednesday/Thursday may be short lived with indications things could pick up leading into the first weekend of March. Possibly one last fling for the winter as the storms are expected to slow down as we head deeper into spring.

This is the final Japan forecast for this season and I’ll be back with the Japan forecasts in December. This has been an amazing season with record breaking snow totals and plenty of powder days. Hard to watch with the borders closed, but the good news is indications are Japan is slowly reopening its borders and we are anticipating we’ll be a back in the land of deep powder snow next winter.

Until then, it is just a few months until the Southern Hemisphere winter kicks in and my first Australian and NZ season outlooks will be published in mid-April.

Take Care and see you then.


Weekly North America Forecast – Deep blower pow for most, but patient Sierras to reap the biggest reward


Valid Thursday 12th March to Thursday 19th March


This is it folks, my last forecast for the North American season. And what a way to sign off from an exceptional season; there is so much snow falling this week it was a real challenge putting it into words.


Significant low pressure stewing over the states will see an icy airmass descend southwards, providing deep blower powder for most. The big news, however, is the 60-120cm+ that is expected to fall in the Sierras. They say that a quiet winter will bring a busy spring, and that certainly looks to be the case this season.


Snow accumulations of 25-50cm+ can be found throughout the Rockies and Cascades, while the Coast Mountains of Canada will take a well-deserved breather with just a sprinkling of a few centimetres.


Thursday – Sunday

Low pressure boils up over states during the next few days. This drags a cold arctic airmass from the icy interior down over Canada, and into Idaho, Montana and Wyoming. Super fluffy, feather-like snow will follow suit.


Skies will mostly clear over these northern areas this weekend, giving you that amazing crispy winter feeling with powder to shred, but the snow will keep coming down over southern Idaho, Montana and Wyoming during Sunday and into Monday as this area marks the boundary between the icy easterly airstream, and warm moist southerlies to the south.


Sucked in by the low pressure, these warm, moist southerlies will dump snow over the southern Rockies during Friday night into Saturday. Snow accumulations will be around 15-30cm+, so a fairly decent dump indeed, although not as light and fluffy as we’re used to.


Meanwhile, a sneaky low will tip-toe down the west coast, wrapping itself in that same icy airmass from the Arctic. High quality snow will spread down the Cascades and into the Sierras during Friday. Heavy snowfalls will shift from the Cascades to the Sierras during Saturday as the low continues south, and will continue through Sunday.


Monday – next Thursday

As skies clear up in most other places during Monday, it’ll continue to dump in the Sierras. The eastern ranges of the Colorado will however, see some more snow late Monday.


The sneaky low will snoop farther inland from Tuesday onwards. Snow will become less widespread and button off in the Sierras, although not clear completely, while spreading inland to the Rockies south of Southern Idaho-Montana with some moderate-heavy falls expected.


ECMWF model 10-day snow accumulations. Source:



That’s all from me for North America this season. I won’t be putting my feet up for long however, because the Southern Hemisphere is starting to chill off, and you know what that means!

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