I see a few aircraft diverted from Chambery today; here in Tignes it was little different – even the master aviators gave up and took shelter where they could! The weather was a bit later arriving than we thought, but by breakfast time it was snowing lightly and by early afternoon we had 90 mins of very heavy snow. It stopped snowing at 5 o’clock. The snow at 2100m was quite heavy as it was quite warm – up higher it will be better, if a bit (or a lot) windblown. With the wind and the snow it didn’t look great so I took a day off – the lower slopes were busy as I suspect it was quite unpleasant above 2500m.
Forecasting exactly what is going to happen is getting more difficult – the atmosphere over the Alps for the next week could best be described as chaotic and the different forecasters are disagreeing. But after a few sunny spells in the morning it will cloud over and we will have light snow by lunchtime. This will become heavy later in the afternoon when it will become increasingly windy (watch for the links between Val d’Isere and Tignes closing early). The snowline will be below Tignes Les Brevieres – a good place to head, along with La Daille.
Tuesday will be similar to Monday afternoon: a windy whiteout. But if you think that is bad wait for Wednesday when the winds will be gale force and the freezing level will be at 200m. If this comes to pass it will be brutal, despite a chance of a fast moving sunny period. Thursday and Friday will be mainly snowy, but the wind will abate and the temperatures will rise a degree or 2. I would hazard a guesstimate of between 40 and 60cm between now and late Wednesday, but that could vary significantly as this witches cauldron bubbles away!
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