It has been snowing heavily, and continues to snow, this week in both North and South America at the same time.
Usually, of course, it doesn’t snow in North America during the South American ski season, and vice versa, but this is that grey area between the northern and southern winters when it can snow in either or both hemispheres at the same time – it just doesn’t happen very often.
1-2" of new snow yesterday and more on the way this afternoon. #mammothstories 🎥 @petermorning
Posted by Mammoth Mountain on Dienstag, 16. Mai 2017
(Snowfall at Mammoth Mountain California this week)
For ski areas the snow – up to 35cm has been reported in Western North America and up to 60cm in the Andes of South America so far – is something of a quandary. Do North American areas re-open top give people the chance to enjoy it, do South American areas open early as, who knows, these might be the best conditions of 2017?
Well so far, in Canada, Grouse Mountain above Vancouver (pictured below on Tuesday), which reported 32cm of fresh snow on Wednesday, has re-opened its ski slopes to take advantage of the fresh snow.
In the US, Mt Bachelor has announced it will be re-opening but not immediately – in July.
Of course some North American ski areas are still open and have been since autumn last year.
In the USA Mammoth, Mt Rose and Squaw Valley in California are still open, as are Arapahoe Basin in Colorado, Snowbird in Utah, Killington in Vermont and Mt Bachelor and Timberline in Oregon.
The coming holiday weekend in the US is the last of the season for half of these areas, although some plan to stay open to June or July and in Squaw’s case Saturdays right through summer and autumn, but there should be fresh snow at almost all this Saturday and Sunday anyway.
In Canada it’s the last week of the season at present at Whistler in BC (pictured top this week and re-opening for summer skiing and boarding in July) and at Sunshine near Banff.
In the southern hemisphere the heavy snow in Chile and Argentina has left some ski areas hinting they might open this weekend, although most will stick to the scheduled mid-June opening in a month’s time (above, Portillo in Chile looking good ion May after heavy snowfall)
It was a similar scenario in 2016 last year when there was great snow in May but then not much until late July so ski areas may want to take advantage while the going is good where they can.
Check out the latest USA snow forecast map here