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J2Ski Snow Report - May 9th 2024

J2Ski Snow Report - May 9th 2024

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Started by Admin in Snow Forecasts and Snow Reports

J2Ski Snow Report - May 9th 2024

Admin posted 09-May

Winter Park, Colorado, just got another 9 inches of goodness, in May!

Many of the few northern hemisphere ski areas still open, will close this coming weekend, with fresh snow. Meanwhile, some decent early snow fall is reported from the other side of the world.

The Snow Headlines - May 9th
- Number of ski areas open in Europe drops to single figures.
- More fresh snowfall for Eastern and Western US coastal mountains and the Rockies.
- Skiing back to resort still open at Cervinia, with "excellent deep snow conditions".
- More pre-season snowfalls for Andes and New Zealand with the 2024 season now 3 weeks away.
- Arizona Snowbowl announces plan to reopen at weekends through May.
- Norway's Galdhopiggen glacier ski area opens for 2024 season.

Snow forecast for (mostly) closed slopes

Re-publication :- our Snow Report Summary, being the text above this line, is free to re-publish, but must be clearly credited to www.J2ski.com with text including "J2Ski Snow Report" linked to this page - thank you.

World Overview
As we move further into May and the number of ski centres still going with their 23-24 seasons continues to halve each week, there are now about 20 ski areas left open in the northern hemisphere. More than half of them are in the US and five in Austria with just one or two still going in each of half-a-dozen other countries.

Japan's 'golden week' ended last weekend meaning the end of 23-24 for their remaining resorts, although summer ski destination Gassan, which only started its season last month, remains open.

Mother nature has been quite supportive of those centres still battling on, with some wintery weather complete with decent spring snow dumps reported in Western North America, northern Scandinavia and the high Alps this week – which is pretty much where the last open ski areas all are.

The last ones that had been open in Eastern Europe and the Iberian Peninsular closed earlier this month.

Focus is starting to turn to the southern hemisphere now with the 2024 season starter just three weeks away and Afriski in Lesotho, re-opening for snowsports after missing last season, looking likely to be first to open on 1st June.

Afriski has not had any snow this week but there's been more in the Andes, which have had a very white few weeks with quite deep snow down to resort level at centres including Bariloche (with over a metre in resort, 2 metres up high - more than 6 weeks before the season start date has been planned) and Las Lenas in Argentina. There's also been more snowfall in New Zealand.

The Alps
We're down to single figures for ski areas still open in the Alps – the vast majority of them in Austria, with a couple more possibilities in France and on the Swiss/Italian border.

Austria's Solden and Pitztal glaciers closed earlier this month but the Stubai, Kaunertal, Hintertux, Kitzsteinhorn (near Kaprun) and Molltal are all still open with three of them planning to continue into June.

They report mixed weather including snow showers up high and temperatures around freezing most of the time above 2500m. Hintertux and Stubai still have most of their slopes open, over 50km/31 miles each, and Stubai the deepest base in the Alps – 5.7m (19 feet).

In Italy, Cervinia is the last area operating after Livigno and the Presena Glacier ended their seasons. Cervinia now offers year-round access to the Matterhorn glacier area above Zermatt on the Italian side of the border, but reports conditions currently so good it has quite a lot of terrain still open on its side of the border too, including a run back down to the village.

That ski area shared with Cervinia is also the only one still open with access from Switzerland too, until Saas Fee reopens in July. It has had 30cm of fresh snowfall up high this week.

The Titlis glacier near Engelberg, Diavolezza near St Moritz and Adelboden's final ski sector were the three other Swiss areas that ended their seasons last weekend.

The only other Alpine centre still open is the Les 2 Alpes glacier in France, although much of it is reported to be reserved for team training.

Although there's still plenty of snow lying on many Scandinavian ski slopes, all of the regular resorts have now closed until 24-25, the Finnish areas of Ruka and Levi, which closed on Monday, amongst them.

However, Sweden's Arctic Circle Riksgransen, which opened for its 2024 season in late February, is still operating and has started its 10pm to 1am opening for skiing under the midnight sun as 24-hour daylight returns. Its neighbour over the border, Norway's coastal Narvik, also plans to stay open for one more weekend.

The first two of Norway's three summer glacier areas have also started operating for 2024. Galdhopiggen, which is open right through to November, opened on Thursday and Fonna has initially opened just for private team training for now. It has posted pictures of its access road with sides cut 3-4 metres into the snow.

Temperatures have been getting a little warm and sunny over the past few days, but we should see them drop to around freezing with fresh snowfall in the north into the weekend.

North America
There are just three ski areas open in Canada now after Lake Louise and Jasper closed at the end of last weekend. Whistler Mountain and Sunshine plan to continue through next week in the west and over in the east Quebec's Sommet St Sauveur has been re-opening at weekends.

It's been a good spring week in the west with the Banff area - including Sunshine - posting over a foot of snowfall in total over the last seven days, with temperatures remaining cool.

At Whistler, they've started prepping to open the lower mountain to mountain bikers for the summer season so the remaining snowsports terrain is upper mountain only.

The US has the most ski areas open of any country right now with a dozen or so centres to choose from across six states.

Colorado has the most still open – four, with three in Utah, two in each of Oregon, Vermont and California and one in Arizona.

The weather has been playing its part by delivering some of the biggest May snowfalls on record, between 2-4 feet (60-120cm) on higher slopes in the Sierra at the weekend, then more snowfall over the past three days in the Rockies, although unfortunately accompanied by winds gusting up to 100mph.

In the interim, we've seen temperatures fluctuate between 'springlike' and 'mid-winter' meaning freeze-thaw conditions have been dominating.

Oregon's Timberline has been posting the deepest snow in the country, still at over 4 metres, while California's Palisades probably have the most terrain open right now, with a little over half of its vast area still available.
The Admin Man

Edited 2 times. Last update at 14-May-2024