Cold air from the north and moisture from the south will combine to give Juneau significant snow by Sunday morning, forecasters said.
National Weather Service forecaster Tracey Ress said the high winds of the past few days should die down by Saturday evening as snow accumulates.
"It could potentially be giving us some good snowfall amounts tonight into tomorrow and maybe into early Sunday," Ress said today.
Up to 18 inches of dry, fluffy snow could pile up before the weather warms early next week, probably bringing a mix of rain or snow, she said.
An inch of snow fell overnight at the Eaglecrest Ski Area, which is hoping for a big enough dump to reopen its lifts and trails, said business manager Gary Mendivil.
"It sounds like the forecast is quite nice. Snow, snow, snow and snow, heavy at times," he said.
This week's cold weather allowed staff to use snow-making equipment to fill gaps in lower ski trails and the beginners' slope, Mendivil said. Eaglecrest reported about 3 feet of packed snow at the top of the mountain this morning, with just a few patchy inches at the base.
Eaglecrest has been open only a few days this season, from Dec. 29 to Jan. 3.
The ski area reported light winds this morning, far less than in breezy areas of downtown and Douglas.
The weather service said gusts reached 67 mph overnight at the Thane Road rock dump and 48 mph at the top of the Federal Building. Northeast winds to 35 mph with gusts up to 70 mph were expected to continue today.
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