Latest snow forecast
Updated: 2.35pm Tuesday 15 December 2015
The mild weather pattern in the Alps is deeply entrenched and will continue for the foreseeable future. There will be bits and pieces of snow at altitude here and there, starting tonight, but it is almost certain now that we will not see a proper return to winter before Christmas - possibly even before the New Year.
Returning to the positives, some fresh snow is forecast for the northern Alps in the next 48 hours, but mostly above 2000m. Examples of resorts that should benefit from new snow at the top of their ski areas include Engelberg, St Anton and Kaprun. However, it won’t greatly change the bigger picture, and the southern Alps will again miss out.
This weekend, which will see the Christmas week arrivals, is forecast to be fine and very mild once again.
Tonight (Tuesday) most places in Austria will be dry, but some rain will reach the far west (e.g. Lech) later, with a little snow above 1600-1800m.
Wednesday will be mostly cloudy with rain in the Vorarlberg and Tirol, spreading east into the Salzburgland and Upper Austria later. The rain/snow limit will be between 1700m and 1900m. Above 2200m, 10-20cm is possible in places, but the southern Alps (especially Carinthia) will miss most of the precipitation.
Thursday will see showers (snow 2000m) in the central and eastern Austrian Alps, gradually dying away during the course of the day. The far west and south should stay mostly dry.
Friday will be mostly dry with variable cloud and mild temperatures.
Tonight (Tuesday) will see a little rain (snow above 2000-2200m) affecting the far northern Alps (e.g Portes du Soleil), but it shouldn’t amount to very much. The southern French Alps will stay mostly dry.
Wednesday will see some early cloud in the northern Alps, but that should break up to allow a mostly fine day with good sunny spells, especially in the south. It will remain very mild with freezing levels between 2500m in the north and 3000m in the south.
Thursday will be dry and bright but with some areas of high cloud blotting out the sun in places. It will be very mild with freezing levels surpassing 3000m.
There will be little change in the weather on Friday though it should turn a fraction cooler.
Tonight (Tuesday) may see a few showers affect the far north-western Italian Alps (e.g. Courmayeur), with snow above 1800m, otherwise most regions will be dry.
Wednesday will be rather cloudy with a few showers close the border regions (snow 1800m), but no significant precipitation is expected. There will also be some sunny spells, especially in the far south-west.
Thursday will be mostly fine, with freezing levels exceeding 3000m.
It will remain fine, but turn a little cooler, on Friday.
Tonight (Tuesday) will see some rain (snow above 1800-2100m) spread across most parts of Switzerland, though some southern areas will stay dry.
Tomorrow (Wednesday), some rain (snow around 2000m) will linger across the eastern Swiss Alps, but elsewhere it should brighten up with sunny spells. Snowfall totals from this storm will be modest - generally 5-15cm above 2200m, very locally a bit more. The southern, and especially south-eastern Swiss Alps (e.g. St Moritz), will see little if any precipitation.
Thursday will be mostly dry with sunny spells, variable cloud and freezing levels close to or above 3000m.
Friday will remain dry and mostly fine with just a slight drop in temperature.
The weekend looks like being mostly fine and very mild in all regions.
Next detailed snow forecast will be on Friday 18 December 2015, but see Today in the Alps for daily updates