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Greetings from Silverton,

The past  6 days has seen an uptick in streamflow (some streams seeing close to double their median discharge) due to the warm/sunny conditions throughout most of Colorado with melt rates being exacerbated due to dust event D3 and/or D4 being located at the surface of the snowpack.  Around Red Mountain Pass, D3 and D4 are now merged in many locations and very close to merged at Swamp Angel.  During this time there have been a couple of windy days with gusts in the 20-30 mph range in the desert southwest, four corners region.  On Friday, April 14, these winds created enough disturbance to create a haze event in southwest Colorado.  Any dust that fell on the snow surface from this haze is likely negligible, as well as indecipherable with D3/D4 being located on the surface.  But, it is worth mentioning since these seemingly small events do incrementally add to the total dust load on the snow surface and contribute to further reduction of surface albedo.  

The forecast the next  10 days is calling for a series of Pacific storms moving across the inter-mountain west.  Today winds will remain out of the southwest with strong gusts up north and lessening in the south, and warm temperatures continuing.  On Tuesday clouds will increase in the afternoon and bring chance of showers and maybe a few thunderstorms.  Snow levels could be in the 9,000' range Tuesday night.  Late Wednesday could see moderate accumulation in northern Colorado mountains and light accumulation in the central and southern mountains.  Another, slightly colder, system is due to move in Thursday thru Saturday continuing the chance of mountain snow and rain in the lower elevations.  All told, these systems are expected to bring periods with cloud cover and chance of precipitation, when these conditions occur will serve to lessen the solar energy input on the snowpack and possibly even cover the snow surface with clean, fresh snow, temporarily restoring high albedo to the snow surface.       

More Soon.