Operations Update: February 21-22

Category: Operations Blog
543 inches of snow this season and counting....

As of 5am this morning, Squaw Valley upper mountain received 28" of snow and Alpine Meadows received 30" in 24 hours. That brings our season snow total at Alpine Meadows to 543" so far this season!

Overview of today's operations: February 21, 2017

Alpine Meadows

Alpine Meadows saw extremely high winds this morning, with gusts on the summit clocking in as high as 199mph! These incredibly powerful winds caused a number of downed trees that damaged power lines, power poles and even a winch cat. The downed power lines caused a power outage to the base area, but power has since been restored. Luckily no Alpine Meadows lifts appear to be damaged so far, but crews are still in the process of surveying. Due to the excessive winds, avalanche danger and the power outage, Alpine Meadows was closed today. We are planning to operate as many lifts as possible tomorrow, weather and conditions permitting. Check out the scheduled lifts

Squaw Valley

With over 2 feet of new snow in 24 hours, Squaw Valley crews had a challenging morning of snow safety, snow removal, digging out lifts, rebuilding roads and ramps and more. Check out the Patrol shack on the top of KT-22 early this morning as seen from our snow cats:

Photo: Jimmy King

And later being dug out by patrol to start snow safety:

Photo: Ski Patroller Lel Tone

Squaw Valley also saw extremely high winds: gusts clocked in at 193mph early this morning and remained high throughout the day.  As a result upper mountain lifts and KT-22 were closed today. After snow safety was completed, Red Dog, Squaw Creek, Far East and the carpets opened at 10:50am. Due to lightning, all Squaw lifts closed at 1:15pm. While it was a short window to hit the slopes, the snow was soft and fun - especially in the trees!

Riding up Squaw Creek. Photo: Jackie Megnin
More Snow Tonight

According to The National Weather Service Forecast, snow will continue through the evening and possibly tomorrow. We could see another 5-9 inches of snow tonight before the weather starts to taper off tomorrow. Cold conditions with highs in the 20s will continue through the week, keeping the snow chalky and soft. 

Projected Operations for Tomorrow, February 22 

Tomorrow we anticipate significant snow safety, grooming, challenges with removing rime ice, and a lot of work digging out lifts and lift terminals. Many of the upper lifts are completely buried. Delays in the morning are likely, so please tune into our app, the lift & grooming status page and our Mountain Ops Twitter feed. Both mountains will start the day with lower lifts spinning, and then crews will work to open upper mountain lifts as winds and conditions allow.