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PowderAlert 19 2017/18 | Warm West again

Warm at first, but then powder up to 1000m

by Lars Oelmann 02/15/2018
There's powder again and the old pattern is back. It's snowing, but it's getting warm. This time the warmth won't stop abruptly, but on Friday and Saturday the snow line will drop back to powdery regions, so you should still have some on Sunday. It's not going to be wild, but it's going to be decent. Just a normal alarm. It's almost a rarity this season.

Alert period and area

As so often this year, the alert zone stretches from northern France to the Arlberg/Northwest Tyrol. We are also scraping along the alert to the east in the north, but as the precipitation is spread over three days, there will probably be no alert feeling there.

This alert is valid until Sunday morning.


Westerly storm. We know it and more or less know what to do. It pushes far into the Alps and everything is blown away at the top. But it won't matter before Sunday anyway, as it will probably remain cloudy throughout.

Snowfall limit

This time, Ullr isn't sending us a rollercoaster, but more of a rocket test with a slow parachute landing. At the moment it is still snowing down to the lowlands, but it will soon go way up. In western Switzerland and France up to 2000m or just above, in eastern Switzerland/Arlberg 1600-1800m and in the very east of Austria later to 1000-1400m.

In the inner Alps, e.g. in Valais or in the northern Gadin or parts of Tyrol, it can stay much lower for much longer - how far and how long is a guessing game.

Friday the whole thing slowly sinks a few hundred meters lower before it then sinks everywhere to below 1000m from Saturday afternoon. In the inner Alps, it could possibly last until Friday and bring much deeper snow throughout. Or not.

The amounts

Look quite good and 40-60cm of snow is expected from France to the Arlberg. In the core of the area from central Switzerland or the eastern Bernese Oberland to the Arlberg/western North Tyrol, it could even reach 80cm. It's difficult to say whether it could be a tad more in accumulation areas and depends heavily on Saturday and the cold snow, but I don't really see the magic meter.

East of the core there will be around 20-30cm and there may also be an alarm-worthy 40cm somewhere in an accumulation area, but only in three days, so you're more likely to have the feeling on Sunday on tour that it might have been enough to cause an alarm.

Where should I go?

Today on Thursday it's hardly worth it, because a rising snow line and low amounts in the morning are no fun factors.

On Friday you can see if it has stayed consistently snowy in the core in an inner alpine accumulation situation to ski in the trees.

Saturday, depending on fresh snow, you can also ski in the core in normal trees and Sunday it should break up and you can go to a higher ski area.

From Monday you can also plan more exciting tours if the avalanche situation calms down, because it remains cold and you should still find powder on the northern slopes.


You can make this forecast yourself. Simply write all possible weather forecasts from cold-dry to warm-dry or even cold with some snow on a piece of paper, throw them up and choose a forecast. It's completely unclear what will happen from Tuesday onwards. Apart from a mega-superultradump, where.... who knows.

Powder to the people!

Your oracle

This article has been automatically translated by DeepL with subsequent editing. If you notice any spelling or grammatical errors or if the translation has lost its meaning, please write an e-mail to the editors.

Show original (German)

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