Jackson Hole is in its third consecutive day of a major winter storm which has deposited upwards of 33″ of snow since Sunday. As the upper elevations continue to get pounded, the immediate forecast shows promise of continued snowfall. The National Weather Service forecast has issued a Winter Weather Advisory for the region. La Niña seems to be in full effect in the Tetons.
While Jackson Hole Mountain Resort won’t open for skiing until November 27th, skiers are finding knee deep winter conditions on neighboring Teton Pass yesterday and today. On-mountain staff, some of whom have been here for over 30 years are reporting the deepest snow that they have ever seen at Jackson Hole, in October.
The long range forecasts from the National Weather Service and other forecast centers have all noted that some of the strongest La Niña conditions since 1955 are currently building in the Pacific, leading to a high probability of a wild winter for the Tetons. While accurately predicting snowfall several months out is as improbable–as it is popular, sites ranging from NOAA to Accuweather are predicting well above average snowfall for the Tetons. Yet for locals, probably the best indicator of all are the memories from the last time when the la Niña phenomenon prevailed: the winter of 2007-2000great (8), when over 700″ of snow had fallen by the time the winter faucet turned off in June.