The Alpine region is currently under the influence of a strong northern current. With a high pressure area to the west of the Alps and low pressure in Eastern Europe, the eastern nordstau currently provides numerous snow showers in the Eastern Alps and it snows deep into the valleys. Until New Year's Eve, there is plenty of fresh powder snow to be found in the mountains.
The northern high-altitude current brings humid air masses from the North Sea, which accumulate on the Eastern Alps and cause some prolonged rain and snowfall. In the course of Sunday the precipitation will lose intensity, but in the evening and tomorrow morning it will revive again.
While the air in the lowlands of the Alps is too mild for snowfall, large amounts of fresh snow come together on the mountains as well as in inner-Alpine valleys. Between Saturday night and Sunday morning there have already been quantities of around 20 cm in the Kitzbüheler Alps and the Dachstein Tauern region. Tirol and Salzburgerland may well receive another 25 to 40cm by New Year's eve. Vorarlberg welcomes around 10-20cm.
Currently, the strong northwesterly wind -which resulted in massive lift closures- is bringing temporary milder air into the valleys, so the snow line rises to 800 m. In the early morning of Monday the wind calms down with the arrival of another front. The snow line descents again to around 600m.
On the last day of 2018 the region from Vorarlberg to Steiermark -once again- receives heavy rain and snow. The snowfall limit resides from east to west between 500 and 1000m. More than half a meter of fresh snow is coming together in the mountains, and in the Dachstein area close to 1 meter.
In the afternoon, the precipitation in the far west decreases slowly, from Salzburg eastward, however, it still remains wet on New Year's Eve. The snowfall limit rises again to 900 m.
Substantial snow fall for Saalbach. Temperature may tip -15C on Thursday
2019 will start colder for the Eastern Alps (as well as eastern Switzerland) and more snow is in the forecast, especially for the ski resorts east of Innsbruck. Except from some spill-over effects into the northen part of the Dolomites the southern Alps will see little or no fresh snow the next 5 days at least.
Have a lovely, challenging and healthy 2019! Thanks for your visits and support.