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California Ski Scene: What a Difference a Year Makes

Published on: February 16, 2019

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Presidents’ Day Weekend 2019 is nothing like 2018 — and that’s putting it mildly! Last year with barely any rain or snow, families had to alter their 3-day getaway with kids in tow. This year they may have to do so again, but for the opposite reason:

  • While Mammoth Mountain Ski Resort announced this week that slopes will remain open for skiing through July 4, high winds caused brief closures. Resort officials said there has been 21-33″ of snow since Feb.15, making for a current storm total of 51-87″ and the snowiest February on record with over 14-22 feet.
  • At Mt. Shasta Ski Park in McCloud the power is back on and there’s excellent ski conditions.
  • At Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows 2.5 feet of snow in 24 hours (added to 12 feet of snow in Feb. so far,) brings “extremely high” avalanche danger warnings, plus delayed and limited operations.
  • Snow temporarily shut down some roads heading into Lake Tahoe. Check requirements and closures before planning your route.
  • In Southern California where skiers hope to get to Big Bear Mountain Resort to enjoy 4-7″ of new snow, some roads are closed due to rock slides from the storm that passed through.

To gain perspective on what the previous year was like, here’s something we posted on Feb.23, 2018:

  • The California Department of Water Resources snow survey this week revealed the statewide snowpack is at 27% of normal, and there’s a proposal to make water restrictions permanent.
  • With less snow several California ski resorts are facing challenges this year as seen in these reports:
  • Dodge Ridge’s skiing and riding operations remain on temporary hold.
  • China Peak temporarily closed.
  • Yosemite Ski & Snowboard Area does not have enough snow to open for the season.
  • Tahoe Cross-Country Ski Area plans to open Feb.23, but coverage is very thin. Skate is recommended. Rock skis encouraged.
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