Latest snow forecast

Updated: 2.30pm Friday 26 February 2016

The weather in the Alps remains very unsettled, with a major storm due to affect the southern Alps this weekend, especially on Sunday.

 

Between Saturday and Monday, this storm has the potential to deliver 50-100cm of new snow across some parts of the southern Alps, and locally even more.

 

The areas most likely to see big snowfall totals are the Piedmont (e.g. Prato Nevoso, Alagna), eastern Lombardy and the Dolomites (e.g. Passo Tonale, Madonna di Campiglio, Arabba). The one part of Italy which might not see all that much snow is the upper Aosta valley (Courmayeur, La Thuile).

 

Some southern French resorts (e.g. Isola 2000), as well as the far south of Switzerland and Austria (e.g. Zermatt, Nassfeld), could also see significant snow. Val d’Isère may also see significant snow spilling over the border on Sunday night.

 

However, it should be emphasised that subtle changes in the predicted wind flow could affect where the heaviest snow ends up falling.

 

By contrast, protected by the Foehn, the northern Alps will stay mostly dry until later on Sunday, with variable cloud and relatively mild temperatures. Snow is also predicted here (to a greater or lesser extent) later on Sunday and into next week… 

Detailed forecast:

Austria

The rest of Friday will be mostly dry with sunny spells and relatively cool temperatures, with freezing levels between 1000m and 1400m.

 

Saturday will also be mostly dry with variable cloud and sunny spells. However, some snow showers (600-100m) are possible in the far south (mostly in Carinthia) late in the day. It will feel milder in the north, especially in some Foehn affected valleys where temperatures could reach double figures.

 

Sunday will see a more general deterioration of the weather in the south (Carinthia, Osttirol), but with the rain/snow limit rising to between 1200m and 1500m. On the northern side of the main Alpine ridge it should remain dry, if relatively cloudy, with a mild and gusty Foehn wind.

 

Monday will be mostly cloudy with showers or longer spells of rain/snow in all areas. The rain/snow limit will generally be between 1000m and 1500m, but will lower to 700m in the far west (e.g. Lech) later. 

Zell-am-See, Austria - Weather to ski - Snow forecast, 26 February 2016 Sunny spells this afternoon in Zell-am-See - 26 February 2016 - Photo: foto-webcam.eu

France

The rest of Friday will be mostly dry with good sunny spells, especially in the north. Further south, cloud will thicken up later, especially close to the Italian border, with one or two flurries (700-1000m) possible by evening.

 

Saturday will be cloudier though there still may be some good Foehn-induced breaks here and there in the north. There will also be some showers, mostly along the French/Italian border and in the far south (e.g. Isola 2000), with a rain/snow limit somewhere between 700m and 1200m. The northern Alps will stay mostly dry, except perhaps in the Haute-Tarentaise (e.g. Val d’Isère) and Haute-Maurienne (e.g. Bonneval-sur-Arc), where some flurries may spill over the Italian border.

 

Sunday will see further snow showers (700-1100m) in the southern French Alps, heaviest close to the Italian border. Under the influence of the Foehn, the northern French Alps will start dry, but some flurries (1100m) are also likely here later in the day. Heavier snow may also continue in the Haute-Tarentaise and Haute-Maurienne, especially on Sunday night.

 

Monday will be cool and mostly cloudy, with further scattered snow showers likely to low levels (400-800m) in all areas.

Chamrousse, France - Weather to ski - Snow forecast, 26 February 2016 View towards Grenoble (beneath the clouds) from Chamrousse - 26 February 2016 - Photo: chamrousse.com

Italy

The rest of Friday will be mostly dry with lots of sunshine in the eastern Italian Alps. Further west, cloud will increase (especially in the Piedmont) with one or two flurries (800-1000m) here and there later.

 

Saturday will be generally cloudy with spells of snow, heaviest in the southern Piedmont (e.g. Prato Nevoso), with a rain/snow limit around 600-900m.

 

Sunday will see a general intensification of the snow, especially in the central and eastern Italian Alps later in the day. The rain/snow limit will remain quite low in the west, but could rise to 1200-1500m further east.

 

Monday will see fewer snow flurries in the west, but further heavy snow at first in the central and eastern Italian Alps, especially in eastern Lombardy and the Dolomites. 

Sestriere, Italy - Weather to ski - Snow forecast, 26 February 2016 Clouding over in the south-western Italian Alps ahead of this weekend's storm. This is Sestriere - 26 February 2016 - Photo: vialattea.it

Switzerland

The rest of Friday will be mostly dry with good sunny spells, though it may turn a bit cloudier in the far south/south-west later.

 

Saturday will see thicker cloud in the south, especially close to the Italian border where some showers (snow 800m) are likely. Most regions will be dry, however, with the best of any sunshine in the north where the Foehn will also make it feel mild.

 

Sunday will be cloudy with lots of snow in the south, heaviest close to the Italian border. The northern Swiss Alps will start dry and “Foehny” with the best of any brightness in the north-east. However, some showers will also extend to these regions later in the day. The rain/snow limit will generally be between 800m and 1200m, but a bit lower in some parts of the south.

 

Monday will see further showers or longer periods of precipitation, with a rain/snow limit starting at around 1000m in the east and 600m in the west, but falling everywhere later. 

Les Crosets, Switzerland - Weather to ski - Snow forecast, 26 February 2016 Still bright this afternoon in the Portes du Soleil. This is Les Crosets - 26 February 2016 - Photo: telechampery.ch

Outlook:

It will remain unsettled and relatively cool next week with further snow at times, heaviest in the north and west to start with, but with an emphasis towards the south and west later.

Next detailed snow forecast will be on Tuesday 1 March 2016, but see Today in the Alps for daily updates