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2013-14 Ski Season Snowfall Progress Report as of 03/02/14.

The snow report below is offered by Tony Crocker of BestSnow.net. His reports are completely independent and are a methodically competent analysis of an enormous database of snow statistics. His reports will tell you:

  • Who gets the most snow?
  • Is it consistent between years?
  • Does it all come at once or is it spread out over the winter?
  • How likely am I to find powder if I spend a week there?
  • Is there anything special I need to know?
  • And so on.

2013-14 Ski Season Progress Report
as of February 28, 2014

There was a widespread western storm at the start of October, but that snow is gone. Snow from a late October storm of 1+ foot in some of the West probably persists in well preserved locations or those with good November snow. November snowfall was below average in the western coastal regions but well above average at many areas in the Rockies. Most western areas got 1-2 feet in early December, but the middle weeks were more erratic. The western coastal regions continued to be shortchanged through the holidays, when storms flowed through Canada, Montana and northern Colorado. During the second week of January the storm track moved far enough south to bring the first big dumps to the Pacific Northwest, continuing on to the Northern Rockies, Utah and most of Colorado. The ensuing 2 weeks were dry over the entire West. Late January through mid-February saw major storms concentrated on a track from Oregon through the Tetons, Utah and Colorado, with moderate snows in other regions. Later in February the track shifted slightly north, hitting the Pacific Northwest and Northern Rockies hardest, though other regions still got some snow. Snow totals exclude October for most areas, though for some whose online reporting starts at area opening it's not possible to separate it out.

California: Minimal snow was left from 2 October storms after the first 3 dry weeks in November. There was less than one foot of snow in late November, about a foot in early December, 1+ foot of light snow mid-month and a few inches before Christmas. The drought continued 4 more weeks until 1+ foot of snow fell at the end of January. During the first week of February 5 feet fell on the Sierra Crest at Tahoe, with about 3 feet east of the crest and farther south at Mammoth.There was substantial rain at low elevation: Squaw got 63 inches up high but only 10 at its base. With an ensuing warmup Kirkwood was the only area with terrain close to fully open from this storm. A new storm has dropped about a foot with at least another foot expected. By next week nearly all terrain over 8,000 feet should be open, though lower elevation skiing may still be more confined to maintained trails.

Area

Season Snow

Pct. of Normal

Pct. of Area Open

Alpine Meadows

113.5

47%

69%

Squaw 8,000

145

46%

30%

Northstar

88

41%

45%

Mt. Rose

125

52%

100%

Heavenly

124

62%

69%

Kirkwood

201

59%

100%

Mammoth

111

44%

85%

Southern Cal

16

21%

0-50%

Arizona Snowbowl

78

45%

85%

Pacific Northwest: The early storm caused Crystal and Stevens to open for one day each in early October. November snowfall was below average and there was about 2 feet in early December. There was average only a foot the rest of the month, so the region had a poor holiday season. A solid base was finally established with 4+ feet during the second week of January, thouigh surfaces were variable with a fluctuating rain/snow line. Early February storms dumped 7 feet in Oregon, 5 feet in Washington but less than 3 feet at Whistler. Later February storms dumped 5+ feet at Whistler, 4 feet in Oregon and 6-8 feet in Washington.

Area

Season Snow

Pct. of Normal

Pct. of Area Open

Whistler

215

69%

199%

Crystal Mt.

245

83%

100%

Stevens Pass

342

98%

100%

Mt. Bachelor

242

87%

100%

Canadian Rockies and Interior B.C.: November snow was well above average in most of this region. The Okanagan and Kootenay areas had over 4 feet in December and most had excellent holiday skiing. Base depths are 6+ feet at the upper elevations at Revelstoke, Fernie and Whitewater. Silver Star and Sun Peaks were 90+% open by mid-December. Farther east was sketchier through most of December, with bases 3 feet or less, but conditions improved with 2+ feet of snow in late December. Most areas got 4 feet of snow in the first half of January, but only a few inches during the second half. There was 1-2 feet in early February as the major storm track was farther south. Late February snowfall was 1.5 to 3+ feet.

Area

Season Snow

Pct. of Normal

Pct. of Area Open

Big White

199

95%

100%

Lake Louise

154

129%

89%

Sunshine

206

118%

97%

Revelstoke

272

102%

98%

Kicking Horse

183

99%

90%

Whitewater

256

90%

100%

Red Mt.

143

71%

91%

Fernie

258

95%

100%

Castle Mt.

163

85%

95%

U. S. Northern Rockies:Targhee opened 3/4 of terrain the weekend before Thanksgiving and Whitefish shared the early storms in Canada. Elsewhere in the region November was about average. December snow ranged from 6 feet in much of Montana to only 2.5 feet at most Idaho areas. Base depths were 5 feet at Whitefish, Bridger and Targhee for the best holiday skiing. First half of January snow was 4 feet in Montana and Wyoming and 3 feet in Idaho. Second half of January snow was less than a foot. The early February storms dumped 5+ feet in the Tetons and 3+ feet in central Idaho but less than 2 feet elsewhere in the region. Later in February it snowed another 5 feet in the Tetons and 2-3 feet elsewhere in the region.

Area

Season Snow

Pct. of Normal

Pct. of Area Open

Grand Targhee

324

93%

100%

Jackson Hole

297

95%

97%

Whitefish

220

94%

100%

Bridger

259

126%

100%

Schweitzer

170

77%

100%

Brundage

157

70%

98%

Sun Valley

110

74%

92%

Utah: The Wasatch got the early October storm but it melted out. November snowfall was half of normal, and first half of December storms were 2-3 feet. A mid-December storm of almost 2 feet brought Cottonwood Canyon base depths close to 4 feet. Advanced skiing was limited elsewhere during the holidays with base depths no more than 3 feet. Conditions greatly improved with 3-4 feet during the first half of January. After a dry 2 weeks there was a foot at the end of January and 4-5 feet in the first half of February. 1-2+ feet fell in the second half of February.

Area

Season Snow

Pct. of Normal

Pct. of Area Open

Alta

261

71%

100%

Snowbird

261

86%

95%

Brighton/Solitude

242

71%

92%

Park City group

196

94%

97%

Snowbasin

197

92%

100%

Brian Head

106

48%

82%

Northern and Central Colorado: A-Basin and Loveland opened their first snowmaking runs on October 13 and 14. Early snowfall was above average and December slightly below average. Steamboat and Winter Park had most terrain open in mid-December, while most other areas passed the half open mark just before Christmas. A-Basin is 90% open. Most base depths were in the 4+ foot range after an excellent first half of January with 3-5 feet of snow. There was up to a foot during the second half of January and over 5 feet of snow from late January into mid-February. There has been 1-2 feet since then. Some areas are reporting snow totals including early October snow that I exclude below.

Area

Season Snow

Pct. of Normal

Pct. of Area Open

Beaver Creek

201

89%

100%

Breckenridge

297

121%

100%

Copper Mt.

233

122%

100%

Keystone

170

109%

100%

Loveland

268

123%

97%

Steamboat

269

104%

100%

Vail

239

97%

100%

Winter Park

277

116%

100%

Southern and Western Colorado: Early October snow melted out, but late October snow was built upon in November. A strong southern storm came through during the week before Thanksgiving, followed by another 2 feet in early December and up to a foot mid-December, so base depths are well above average at 3.5 feet, and 5.5 feet at Wolf Creek. Taos had its best opening since 1996-97, but had only 8 inches in next 6 weeks with other southern areas getting only somewhat more. Aspen and Crested Butte fared better, with 3 feet of snow during the first half of January. The late January to mid-February storms dumped 7 feet at Wolf Creek, 6 feet at Crested Butte, 4-5 feet elsewhere in Colorado and 3 feet at Taos. About 1.5 feet fell in the second half of February except only 6 inches at Taos.

Area

Season Snow

Pct. of Normal

Pct. of Area Open

Gothic Snow Lab

265

107%

N/A

Aspen/Snowmass

208

121%

100%

Crested Butte

232

135%

86%

Telluride

192

106%

96%

Durango

174

98%

100%

Wolf Creek

270

105%

100%

Taos

140

79%

76%

Northeast: Killington and Sunday River opened at the end of October on snowmaking. November and early December were above average for snowmaking though mostly below average for snowfall. There were 2-3 feet of snow mid-December but it rained at least to the Canadian border the weekend before Christmas. The holiday week was been cold with up to a foot of snow, with another foot in early January. Trail counts were then reduced by a severe rain/freeze. Conditions improved during the second half of January with 1-2 feet of snow and consistent cold temperatures, and were the best of the season after 3 feet of snow in the first half of February. There has been up to 2 feet of snow in the second half of February but also a warmup and some vatriable surfaces. Percents open: Okemo 97%, Stratton 98%, Hunter 78%, Sunday River 97%, Sugarloaf 90%, Tremblant 98%, Ste. Anne 100%

Area

Season Snow

Pct. of Normal

Pct. of Area Open

Jay Peak (mid)

204

83%

100%

Stowe

183

96%

100%

Sugarbush

165

84%

99%

Killington

147

82%

77%

Cannon Mt.

130

111%

92%

Whiteface

102

77%

82%

Le Massif

137

81%

98%

 

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