Jackson Hole Historical Society and Museum - Buckrail

A cool and wet pattern took hold across Western Wyoming last weekend and into the start of the holiday weekend with rain, snow and below-average temperatures. On Saturday, snow fell even across the lower elevations of the Jackson Hole Valley.

Over the past week, lower elevations received 0.5-1.5 inches of precipitation and higher elevations received 1-2 inches of precipitation. May has been a drier than average month overall leading up to last week, so the moisture was needed.

The higher elevations of the Tetons received 13-16 inches of snowfall last week (not accounting for melting) with the highest amounts recorded at Grand Targhee.

Snow depths changed very little above 9,000 ft. over the past week due to the cool temperatures and new snowfall. Areas below 9,000 ft. saw snow depths decrease by 5-10 inches over the past week.

 

Weekly Weather Outlook – May 26 – June 1

Western Wyoming will undergo a significant pattern shift to warmer weather this week, with summer-like temperatures expected by the end of the week. Look for a big uptick in snowmelt and runoff to occur over.

A weak disturbance will bring some clouds and isolated showers on Tuesday. From Wednesday through Saturday, mostly sunny skies early will give way to a chance of afternoon thunderstorms each day.

Tuesday:

A weak disturbance moving across the Northern Rockies is resulting in mostly cloudy skies. Isolated light showers will be possible at times throughout the day and a thunderstorm will be possible in the late afternoon/early evening. Highs will reach the mid 60s in the valley.

The best chance of thunderstorms will be north and west of Jackson.

Wednesday:

We should see a bit more sunshine on Wednesday with highs warming up to around 70. However, there will be a modest chance of afternoon thunderstorms developing, especially north and east of Jackson. Storm motions will be from northwest to southeast.

Thursday:

The warm-up continues on Thursday with highs in the mid 70s as high pressure strengthens over the area. We could still see some isolated afternoon thunderstorm activity, but chances will be lower compared to Wednesday.

Friday:

Highs will approach 80 degrees for the first time this year as warm air continues to pump in from the southwest thanks to a strong ridge of high pressure in place. These temperatures will be more than 10 degrees above average for this time of year.

Moisture will also increase from the southwest, resulting in a chance of afternoon and evening thunderstorms.

Saturday-Sunday:

We’ll see another warm day on Saturday with a chance of afternoon thunderstorms. There are some signs that this could be the most active thunderstorm day over the next 5 days, but confidence is still low this far out.

Temperatures will cool off a few degrees on Sunday with a decreasing threat for afternoon thunderstorms, though it couldn’t entirely be ruled out.

Overall, the end of the week and the weekend is looking very nice with summer-like temperatures but be prepared for the daily afternoon thunderstorm potential.

Buckrail Meteorologist Alan Smith

Alan is a professional meteorologist who holds a degree from MSU Denver and writes weather forecasts for Buckrail. He has lived in Jackson full-time since 2015. He is currently a Meteorologist and Operations Manager for OpenSnow, which is a weather forecasting service for skiing and outdoor adventures. At OpenSnow, Alan writes forecasts for the Tetons, Pacific Northwest, British Columbia, and North America as a whole.