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Snow-fall event climatology: The finale
Submitted by Armida on Mon, 02/11/2013 - 13:07
|Snow-fall event climatology: The finale
|Year of Conference
|Mahoney, J. L., and Brown J. M.
|60th Annual Western Snow Conference
|Proceedings of the 60th Annual Western Snow Conference
|Western Snow Conference
|Jackson Hole, Wyoming
|Climatology, Colorado winter storms, Snowfall event, Synoptic scale patterns
Two distinct types of snowfall events that produce heavy snow along the Front Range of Colorado are discussed in Part 2 of the snowfall-event climatology. A 40-year snowfall-event archive was used as the basis for the study. The additional analyses of synoptic surface and upper air maps, soundings and quasi-geostrophic diagnostics led to the identification of two distinct synoptic patterns, which we shall refer to as a Four Corners Low and a Southeast Colorado Low.The Four Corners Lows were characterized by surface high pressure of arctic regions to the north of Colorado with a cyclone to the southwest of the state, shallow upslope below 700 mb capped by an inversion layer with southwesterly winds above, and lack of synoptic-scale forcing of vertical motion. The Southeast Colorado Lows featured an intense surface cyclone over the southern High Plains associated with a strong upper trough or closed low, deep upslope flow over northeast Colorado, a jet from the northeast quadrant 750 and 500 mb, and strong vertical coherence in the synoptic-scale forcing of vertical motion. We will present examples of each synoptic.