Thursday, 13 December 2012 22:18

Fantastic Start to North American Season

December 12, 2012  JACKSON HOLE - Great early season snowfall with 365cm so far! December 12, 2012 JACKSON HOLE - Great early season snowfall with 365cm so far! Chris Figenshau

The Northern Hemisphere winter has arrived in fine style and in a big way. Western North America is showing signs of great things to come for this winter season.  The snow began arriving early and with volume, and the trend has continued!

Jackson Hole Wyoming reported their first snow fall on October 16.  And since then it has snowed an amazing early season total of 144”/365cm with a base of 59”/150cm.  On the other side of the Grand Tetons, Grand Targhee is reporting the same numbers. Big Sky in Montana has a base of 41”/104cm.  Alta is reporting 114”/290cm of snowfall with a 47”/120cm base.

Farther north in the Canadian Rockies and the interior of BC they have great early season conditions. Red Mountain known for its volume of snow in the aptly named “Powder Highway” region of BC have said they are having their best start in five seasons.  Sunshine and Lake Louise are fully open with great skiing to be had for the past couple of weeks!  The Lake has had a snowfall of 93” / 237cm with a base of 101cm/40” and Sunshine reports a whopping 323cm / 127”  with a base of 121cm /48” and remember, its only mid 2012-12-13-Jackson Hole Photo-11Dec PowDecember as this is written!

Check out the early season skiing at Jackson with this video link  Click Here

From my many seasons in Western Canada and the USA, if you have a great start to the season it translates into a fantastic season throughout.  The one important reason for this is that a solid base gets laid down early and supports all the other snowfall throughout the season and allows the ups and downs through out the rest of the season to not have such a severe effect on ski conditions.

The snow base statistic is the most important statistic for these western ski areas. A good base is required in these areas due to the rugged mountain formations. All the crooks, crags and rocks need to get buried and the snow needs to be packed down in order to hold throughout the rest of the season.  An early base means more areas are opened sooner, more packing of the snow and more snow captured throughout the season.  With the warm spells we seem to have now dispersed through the winter, the depth of base is even more important as the mountain will continue to be in great shape even if a warm spell hits mid or late season.  

So if you have been considering a ski trip to the western USA or Canada, I say this is the season to hit it as odds are in your favor of good snow!

See you on the snow!

Gerry Winchester
Founder - DreamSki Adventures

Gerry's Blog

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