As of 5am, we received 10" of fresh snow, and it has been snowing heavily every since. By 4pm, we have received another 17", bringing the storm total to 27" and counting! According to Mountain Manager Jimmy King, this depth of snow is often quadrupled in areas of the upper mountain due to high winds and wind drift.
Today was an awesome day of skiing and riding on the lower mountain. Our crews were able to spin KT-22, Squaw Creek, Far East and Red Dog. The upper mountain remained on wind hold. Here's what it looked like out there:
At Alpine Meadows our crews were able to open Roundhouse, Hot Wheels, Yellow, Kangaroo for some really fun powder turns! Roundhouse went on a short hold mid-day as Ski Patrol conducted another round of snow safety. It re-opened again in the afternoon so riders could enjoy the free refills. The Alpine Meadows Road closed once this morning at 8:45am and again at 4:15pm for avalanche control.
According to the NOAA weather forecast, snow showers will continue through the night and tomorrow morning with another several inches of new snow accumulation forecasted. Winds will stick around tomorrow before calming down and clearing up Tuesday into Wednesday.
Projected Operations for Tomorrow, March 6, 2017
We are fully staffed at both mountains to conduct avalanche control, dig out lifts, groom ramps, remove ice and "put the mountain back together" again to open as many lifts as possible. Snow safety and work to dig out chairlifts could cause delays.
At Squaw Valley, the lower mountain lifts from Squaw Creek to KT-22 will likely open first, followed by the Funitel, Tram and upper mountain lifts as they are ready. Granite Chief and Emigrant will be delayed as our crews work on lift clearance. Both lifts need significant help from our winch cats to be operate. Headwall is also anticipated to open later, as all of the chairs need to be de-iced and put back on. Silverado is not on tomorrow's schedule, but could open by Tuesday. Wind holds are also possible. For more information on winds and how they affect our chairlift operations, check our wind blog.
At Alpine Meadows, our crews are geared up to run all lifts, but there may be delays due to avalanche control and digging out lifts. It is also likely that Alpine Meadows Road will close for a period for control work.