Friday, November 12, 2010

Fresh Snow News

Winter is here, well if we forget it’s autumn it is, there’s been more heavy snow across the Alps, North America, Scotland and Scandinavia – most places in fact. Coverage is a bit more general and Skiinfo’s "Powder alarm" switchboard has been lighting up like a Christmas Tree.
There’s been plenty of fresh snow in Austria with the Molltal glacier reporting the most new snow of the dozen or so open Austrian ski areas with a 46cm accumulation. It has one of the deepest snow depths in the country at around 1.5m along with the Kaunertal, Pitztal and Tux glaciers, Solden has 1.2m.

In France temperatures have been cooler and snow has replaced earlier rain since the weekend. There has been up to 20cm of snow in the Alps and Pyrenees in the past few days and larger falls are expected in the next three days. Tignes is still the only ski resorts open in France with 35cm of snow on the Grande Motte glacier (16km of runs and 8 lifts open).
Conditions are looking great at Italy’s open resorts. The Presena Glacier reported 50cm of fresh snow on Sunday (7 Nov) and currently claims the deepest snow in the world with a three metre base on its glacier slopes. Cervinia is also open at weekends.
Half a dozen ski areas are open in Switzerland including Engelberg, Les Diablerets, Laax, Saas-Fee and Zermatt. Saas fee has the deepest snow depth with 1.8.
There’s been snow in the Pyrenees but no ski areas are open there at present. In Spain, Formigal (picture attached 11th November) received 15cm of snow on Monday 8th November and another 60cm in the past 24 hours with plans to open on the 27th November.
There has been up to 60cm of snow fall on Norway’s ski slopes in the past week. Voss has the most snow at the moment accumulated, a total of 60cm, having received 30cm fresh in the past seven days. About 12 ski areas are open there at present, although two thirds of these are currently only open at weekends.
Lake Louise in Alberta was the first resort skiable this season in Canada when it opened at the weekend (November 5th). Nakiska hopes to open next weekend (12th), and others including Marmot Basin and Sun Peaks will open soon after. Whistler has reported plenty of fresh snow this week.
More ski areas have opened across the US and though the situation is changing daily there are probably now more ski areas open here at present than in any other country. Keystone in Colorado and Killington in Vermont are among the latest, with Breckenridge due to follow at the weekend. The ski season starts in Utah on Friday at Brighton and Solitude. In California, Squaw Valley reports a foot (30cm) of fresh snow.

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