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J2Ski Snow Report - May 16th 2024

J2Ski Snow Report - May 16th 2024

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Started by Admin in Snow Forecasts and Snow Reports

J2Ski Snow Report - May 16th 2024

Admin posted 16-May

Catedral Alta Patagonia, Argentina, with the snow that let them open last weekend...

First tracks for the southern hemisphere, with a couple of dozen northern ski areas still open.

The Snow Headlines - May 16th
- Southern hemisphere's 2024 season starts early in South America.
- Colorado's Breckenridge and Copper among US areas that ended seasons at the weekend.
- Norway's Galdhopiggen glacier opens for 24 season. Fonna, Stryn and Stelvio up next.
- Last areas still open for 23/24 in Western Canada will close after coming weekend.
- US summer ski area Beartooth Basin not opening in 2024, nor Blackcomb summer skiing.

Still more snow forecast

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
We're into the latter half of May and as you'd expect temperatures are warming in the northern hemisphere and cooling in the south. The number of ski areas open in Asia, Europe and North America continues to decline whilst the first (early) skiing is underway in the south.

We're down to about 30 centres still open in the northern hemisphere now with about a third of them set to end their seasons this coming Sunday.

In the southern hemisphere the season wouldn't usually start until June but this year heavy early snowfall has led to one early opening ski area in the Andes, with more planning to join in this coming weekend.

The past week has not been as snowy in either the northern or southern hemispheres, after the big falls in the Alps, Western North America and South America of recent weeks. There have been more lighter snowfalls though with temperatures remaining cold on Alpine glaciers and in most southern hemisphere ski regions.

The Alps
Temperatures have remained close to freezing on glaciers in the Alps over the last week and there have been some light snow showers reported, although it's been predominantly sunny. Valley temperatures have been climbing up to plus 20 or even 25 Celcius.

We have the same seven glacier areas open as a week ago, five of them in Austria. Two of these, the Stubai (which currently has Europe's deepest base at nearly 19 feet) and the Kaunertal will end their long 23-24 seasons, which began last October, at the end of the ski day on Sunday. The remaining five plan to stay open into June or beyond.

The other three Austrian centres still going are the Kitzsteinhorn above Kaprun in Salzburgerland, Carinthia's Molltal and the Tirol's Hintertux near Mayrhofen in the Ziller Valley.

Year-round Hintertux has the most terrain open, about three-quarters of the runs equating to 30 miles of slopes.

There's also the Matterhorn Glacier paradise above Zermatt, now accessible year-round from the Cervinia side (and at the last report with some terrain still open on the Italian side of the border too). It's currently posting just over 20 miles of runs open, more than twice the usual summer minimum.

Les 2 Alpes glacier also remains open, mostly for team training but with a few runs available to recreational skiers and boarders.

We're seeing Scandinavia switch from spring to summer mode with Norway's final 'winter season' resort of Narvik closing whilst the first of its summer areas Galdhopiggen, opens for its 2024 six-month run.

Fonna (already open to teams for training) opens to the public in a week and then Stryn at the start of June.

In Sweden, Riksgransen, up in the Arctic Circle, is into its final weeks, now reporting 24-hour daylight and skiing under the Midnight Sun. It plans to re-open for midsummer next month.

It's been dry for much of Scandinavia this week, with temperatures -5C to +10C, but with more rain/sleet/snow showers and a few degrees cooler up in the Arctic Circle, with more of the same forecast.

North America
It's the final weekend of the season coming up for Western Canada at least with the last two resorts still open, Banff's Sunshine in Alberta and Whistler Mountain in BC both gearing up for their final days.

Sunshine has probably the bigger closing plans with their Slush Cup finale, the resort's 94th annual pond skimming spectacular, that being the final day highlight next Monday.

It's been warm and mostly dry in the west with Whistler seeing +25C at its base this week. Although it's cooler up high, the snow has been slushy by the afternoons. There's still plenty of snow on higher runs though. That said, Whistler's Blackcomb Mountain won't offer summer snow camps in June/July this August due to insufficient snow cover on the glacier.

On the East Coast, it appears this may be the last weekend of 23-24 too for Sommet Saint-Sauveur in Quebec, which has kept about a kilometre of slope open. They're planning a floodlit fun season finale on Saturday.

The are still a dozen or so US ski areas open, although some now only at weekends.

Breckenridge, Copper, Loveland and Vermont's Jay Peak were among the areas closing last weekend but there are still resorts in Arizona, Colorado, Utah and Vermont continuing on their 23-24 seasons.

Unfortunately there'll be no summer skiing at Beartooth Basin this year. Usually starting in late May the centre posted this week that snow cover is inadequate to open in 2024.

After the big snowfalls in the Rockies and on the West Coast last week it has been mostly drier and warmer over the last seven days, although another front did bring some more snowfall to higher slopes in the west.

Oregon's Timberline has the deepest snowpack at around 4 metres.

Other still open areas include Mammoth and The Palisades in California, Arapahoe Basin and Winter Park in Colorado, Utah's Brighton and Snowbird, and at weekends through May, the Arizona Snowbowl. On the East Coast, we're down to just Killington.

Southern Hemisphere
Within 24 hours of our report last week being published, noting some big snowfalls in the Andes and other mountains in South America, it was announced that one of the ski areas that has seen the most snowfall, Catedral near ski town Bariloche in Argentina, was to open limited terrain last weekend. That duly happened, to the delight of locals. Official snow depths of 40-80cm were published after unofficial snowfall totals of 1.2-2.4m had been announced.

Subsequently, two Chilean ski areas, Nevados de Chillan and Corralco, have announced that they plan to open this coming weekend, Nevados de Chillan for four days, Corralco, they hope, right through to the end of the season next October.

Elsewhere in the southern hemisphere ski areas in New Zealand have reported more snowfall, there have been cold nights in Australia and it's just a fortnight until Afriski in Lesotho is due to reopen after missing last season.

For the coming week it is New Zealand looking like it'll see the most fresh snowfall with clearer skies, but cold nights still in the Andes and similar for Australia and southern Africa.
The Admin Man

Edited 1 time. Last update at 16-May-2024