It’s been snowing again in New Zealand. The big resorts of the South Island woke up to 10-35cm of fresh snow this morning, and the chance to ski powder for the second time in a week.
Pictured below is The Remarkables, near Queenstown, earlier today. It’s claiming 35cm of fresh snow on it upper slopes, and settled cover of up to 135cm.
And this was Treble Cone, near Wanaka, whose snow report records 25cm of new snow up top today.
The new snow has come in the wake of fresh falls in the middle of last week, which were significant in some resorts. On August 8, The Remarkables reported 45cm of fresh snow in two days. The skies then cleared, and skiers and snowboarders enjoyed a couple of epic powder days in the wake of the storm.
Meanwhile Cardrona, near Wanaka reported 35-40cm of fresh snow on August 8. For a taste of the blissed-out atmosphere there on Saturday, check out this 40-second video from Australian fashionista Pip Edwards.
There’s been some cracking skiing on Mt Ruapehu on the North Island as well, where there was fresh snow last week. The cover there is up to 132cm deep on south-facing slopes.
All of which is a big shot in the arm for the NZ ski industry which has been struggling with the warmest winter since records began in 1909. All the big-name resorts have been able to open – but until recently there’s been precious little on the way of off-piste, and on occasion one or two have had to shut because of poor cover on the lower slopes. These problems, have however been minor compared to the smaller Club Fields, which don’t have the budgets to run snow-making systems. Some haven’t opened at all yet this winter – although Craigieburn and Broken River both said that in the wake of last week’s snowfall one more dump would should do the trick. Maybe we’ll hear good news from them later this week…
Fresh snow last week in the Andes
This was the ruler test in Valle Nevado, near Santiago in Chile on Thursday morning – in the wake of 25cm of fresh snow. Which meant that Thursday was a powder day…
Although there’s snow in the forecast today for resorts in the southern Andes, such as Catedral Alta Patagonia, it doesn’t look as though it will reach Valle Nevado and the other ski areas around Santiago. Currently, Valle Nevado reports 40cm of settled cover on the lower slopes and 120cm higher up.
Only a dusting in Australia
In south-eastern Australia, it’s been week of blue skies and precious little fresh snow, although the cover is still deep across the Snowy Mountain resorts. Yesterday saw the Top2Bottom ski/snowboard/mountain bike race at Thredbo….
And there was a 10cm dusting overnight too…
Meanwhile, in the Alps…
Last week in the Alps, the weather settled down for a few days: perfect for a bit of this, in Zell am See in Austria.
But there was also decent skiing up on the Hintertux glacier in the Tirol, where the summer glacier-skiing season continues.
The outlook for the coming week is distinctly, er, changeable with several weather fronts lining up to cross the Alps, interspersed with sunny intervals.
|France: the summer ski season is now over in Tignes. The glacier reopens in October 4 and will stay open until the start of the proper winter season. Meanwhile, above Les Deux Alpes, summer skiing continues until August 30.|
|Switzerland: Zermatt’s glacier is in pretty good shape, considering it’s August. There was heavy snow up there a couple of weeks again, and the resort reports cover up to 190cm deep on the 14 pistes currently open for skiing. The glacier above Saas-Fee is open for summer skiing too: although bad weather has closed the pistes today. The settled cover is 270cm deep.|
|Austria: you can currently ski on the Hintertux glacier east of Innsbruck, as well as the Molltaler glaicer near Flattach. On the Hintertux, 18km of pistes are open, and the snow is up to 195cm deep.|
|Italy: you can currently access glacier skiing on the Swiss-Italian border from Cervinia, when conditions allow.|
|Andorra: Andorra’s ski resorts are now closed.|
|Western USA: The Rocky Mountain ski season finally finished in June. But let’s not forget that in in late September they’ll be cranking up the snow cannons again in Loveland and Arapahoe Basin if conditions are right. If you want to ski now, head to Timberline Lodge on Mount Hood in Oregon.|
|Western Canada: the short summer skiing season on the the Horstman above Whistler has now finished.|