Winter Weather Forecasting

Course Description

2 days or 16 hours 450

This 2 day course is focused on winter weather forecasting for avalanche forecasters, mountain guides, ski patrols, pilots, and others who want to generate a short term forecast in a very dynamic weather season. It will be centered on information that is currently available on the Internet and is broadly applicable to all snow climates.

The course will focus on a systematic approach to understanding weather from surface observations to the upper atmosphere.  There will be a mixture of real-time weather product analysis and forecast exercises that introduce important patterns to recognize.

At the end of the Winter Weather Forecasting course, participants will generate a wind, temperature, and precipitation forecast on their own, using products available on the web.

This course is taught by trained meteorologist Jim Woodmencey.



A basic foundation of weather knowledge.

Recommended Reading

  • Reading Weather, 2000 Jim Woodmencey, Falcon Press. A straightforward discussion of weather forecasting in the field. It does not address internet weather products.
  • The Weather Book: An Easy-To-Understand Guide to the USA’s Weather, second edition, 1997, Jack Williams, Random House. Great illustrations for understanding weather phenomena.
  • Mountain Weather: Backcountry Forecasting and Weather Safety for Hikers, Campers, Climbers, Skiers, and Snowboarders, 2005, Jeff Renner, The Mountaineers. A fairly simple book, but has good discussions on local mountain phenomena by region (Western US and Canada).
  • Mountain Meteorology: Fundamentals and Applications, C.D. Whiteman. This book is expensive, but is an excellent resource. Used and new copies are available at
Course City State Dates Cost
Winter Weather Forecasting Course Jackson WY 12/14-12/15 $ 450 Wait-list
  • BCA
  • Fischer Skis
  • Stio
  • Teton AT