Us Ski USA - California

Welcome to the Ski USA page, providing a regular round-up of the skiing conditions and current snow reports for the main ski resorts in the United States. Over recent years some of the best and consistent piste conditions have been reported at Aspen (Colorado), Alta (Utah), The Canyons (Utah), Winter Park (Colorado), Big Sky (Montana) and Jackson Hole (Wyoming). However, in any given week or season the best slope conditions may be found at a number of other North American resorts so keep an eye on the snow forecasts and reports if you are planning a last minute trip.

For off-piste powder, Alta, Aspen, Big Sky, The Canyons, Winter Park and Loveland have proven among the most consistent in the country over several seasons but check out the reports below for the latest news.

For big snowfalls and accumulated snow depths the Californian resorts of Squaw Valley and Mammoth feature strongly in the records as do the dry powder resorts of Solitude, Alta and Snowbird. Timberline in Oregon also has an enviable snow record.

With more than 500 ski areas spread across some 38 US states, America is one of the world’s leading ski nations, clocking up around 50 million skiers on the slopes each winter.

US ski resorts are spread right across the country from East Coast to West. There are also resorts in Alaska and it’s sometimes possible to ski in Hawaii on the slopes of 4205m high Mauna Kea, although there are no ski lifts there.

You’ll find a great diversity of terrain when you ski USA from the comparatively low lying mountains of New England and the Blue Ridge mountains of Virginia to the south, to smaller hills across the MidWestern prairies, to the Rocky Mountains and Sierras on the West. The Rockies stretch over a mile above sea level at resort height in some cases, resulting in almost half of the 20 highest ski lifts in the world being located in Colorado.

What’s common to this diverse selection of ski areas, which range from small private hills owned by schools and military bases to major international resorts like Aspen and Vail famed around the world, is a dedication to high service standards. When you’re skiing USA these include high quality on the slopes with well groomed, normally uncrowded slopes with uplift generally provided by chairlifts, gondolas or cable cars (known as trams in North America) rather than drag lifts. Indeed the chairlift, as well as the hot tub, are both American inventions credited to Sun Valley in Idaho.

Some ski areas in the USA date back the best part of a century. Most were established by pioneers, often on a shoestring budget with just a simple tow lift converted from a car, lorry or even motorbike engine. But decades of gradual growth have led many of these original small, simple set-ups to become major international resorts – Mammoth Mountain in California is a good example of this.

Others were set up by emigrants from the Alps, most famously Cranmore Mountain Resort in New Hampshire which was established with help from Austrian downhill ski technique pioneer Hannes Schneider from the Austrian Arlberg who arrived in the US having refused to join the Nazi propaganda machine when they took over Austria in the 1930s. During the Second World War he helped train the 10th Mountain Division of the U. S. Army, some veterans of which also became resort developers after the war.

Famous resorts like Vail, now the largest ski area in the US, were established later with strong European involvement. Other resorts like Aspen and Breckenridge were former 19th century mining settlements that found a new lease of life when ‘white gold’ was struck.

Along with growth on the mountains, the 1990s and first decade of the current century saw a boom in resort ‘real estate’ developments with hotels, condominiums, shops and restaurants created at the bases of ski slopes which in some cases had previously only had car parks. This period – which slowed dramatically from 2008 due to the global economic situation – led to an era of corporations taking over from individual families, and currently four or five large companies own and operate around 50 leading US resorts between them.

In Eastern North America snowmaking developed in the 1950s and rapidly became an essential requirement at most of the ski areas in the region, leading to it becoming known as “the snowmaking capital of the world.”

In the West of the country, which is best known for its destination resorts particularly in states like California, Utah and Colorado, a major selling point is abundant, deep powder snow which is the norm if not always guaranteed. One of the snowiest places on earth are Alaska and Washington State in the North West of the country where falls of up to 50 feet (16 metres) can be recorded in one winter, more than any other ski region on earth.

Criticisms of US skiing from some, when compared to Europe, is that ski areas are mostly smaller, lift tickets more expensive, spectacular scenery is rare and the resorts and slopes are too sanitised and bland at some of the most corporately run areas. The kind of family run, home-cooking small mountain hut is quite rare in the US where large cafeterias serving fast food are more common. However many of these ‘flaws’ for some are seen as assets by others, which when combined with the other points listed in this article combine to make the US ski experience the best on earth.

And despite the well groomed pistes, many resorts have built reputations for challenging off piste terrain, including Jackson Hole in Wyoming, Alyeska in Alaska and Squaw Valley in California.

The country’s positive attitude to children is also seen as an asset for families in most cases, with children praised for their efforts in nursery and ski school.

The US is also the home of snowboarding with Jake Burton inventing the sport in Vermont in the late 1970s. Stratton there has organised snowboarding contests longer than any other. However the country is also home to three resorts that still ban snowboarding: Alta and Deer Valley, both in Utah, and Mad River Glen in Vermont.
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USA - California: latest snow conditions round-up


USA / Canada

Summary of forecast snowfall and ski conditions for resorts in USA - California. Fresh snow is forecast at 19 resorts. Powder is reported at 0 resorts and 1 are reporting good piste conditions.

Recent Eyeball Snow Reports for USA - California

All resorts

Best piste conditions (1)

Ski resorts of USA - California, alphabetically

Bottom Mid Top
Resort Webcam Top
snow depth
top and bottom
Good piste
on-piste
Powder
off-piste
Fresh snow depth
Last Snow
Fresh snow depth
Next 9 Days
0–3 | 3–6 | 6–9
snow (cm)
Weather Next 5 days weather forecast.
Freezing level (m)
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu

(2083m — 2632m)

snow report today

276
167
Packed powder or groomed snow 9 cm
yesterday
22
23
7
partly cloudy
light snow
moderate snow
light snow
snow showers
Mid station 2358 m
2100m 1150m 700m 650m 450m

(1981m — 2164m)

snow report 21 days ago

Alta Sierra at Shirley Meadows webcam
2 cm
21 days ago
4
38
cloudy
partly cloudy
snow showers
heavy snow
light snow
Mid station 2072 m
3200m 1850m 1200m 1000m 700m

(2177m — 2684m)

snow report yesterday

152
117
Machine Groomed 1 cm
3 days ago
9
partly cloudy
clear
clear
snow showers
snow showers
Mid station 2430 m
3550m 3050m 1700m 1250m 1050m

(2012m — 2593m)

snow report yesterday

178
178
Machine Groomed 8 cm
today
27
42
4
partly cloudy
light snow
heavy snow
moderate snow
snow showers
Mid station 2302 m
2150m 1050m 700m 850m 550m

(2179m — 2684m)

snow report 3 days ago

2 cm
3 days ago
11
partly cloudy
clear
partly cloudy
light snow
light snow
Mid station 2432 m
3550m 3000m 1550m 1200m 1000m

(2195m — 2378m)

snow report yesterday

221
221
Machine Groomed 10 cm
yesterday
23
27
10
clear
snow showers
moderate snow
light snow
snow showers
Mid station 2286 m
2100m 1100m 700m 700m 500m

(2133m — 2652m)

snow report yesterday

127
127
Machine Groomed 2 cm
3 days ago
8
32
1
partly cloudy
light snow
light snow
light snow
snow showers
Mid station 2392 m
2450m 1300m 1050m 750m 650m

(2143m — 2655m)

snow report 3 days ago

3 cm
3 days ago
10
47
2
rain showers
light snow
light snow
light snow
snow showers
Mid station 2399 m
2550m 1550m 1250m 900m 600m

(1859m — 2073m)

snow report yesterday

4 cm
yesterday
2
4
1
clear
snow showers
snow showers
snow showers
snow showers
Mid station 1966 m
1800m 950m 850m 750m 600m

(2012m — 2499m)

snow report today

114
91
Machine Groomed 5 cm
today
19
36
2
partly cloudy
light snow
moderate snow
moderate snow
snow showers
Mid station 2256 m
2300m 1000m 950m 800m 550m

(2143m — 2362m)

snow report yesterday

76
71
Variable Conditions 10 cm
yesterday
22
26
9
clear
snow showers
moderate snow
light snow
snow showers
Mid station 2252 m
2100m 1100m 700m 700m 500m

(1923m — 2015m)

snow report yesterday

7 cm
yesterday
15
16
5
partly cloudy
snow showers
moderate snow
light snow
snow showers
Mid station 1969 m
2150m 1150m 850m 750m 600m

(2002m — 3068m)

snow report today

Heavenly webcam
129
48
Packed powder or groomed snow 4 cm
yesterday
9
12
1
partly cloudy
snow showers
light snow
snow showers
snow showers
Mid station 2535 m
2250m 1200m 1050m 950m 950m

(1899m — 2402m)

snow report today

226
107
Machine Groomed 8 cm
yesterday
18
20
5
partly cloudy
snow showers
moderate snow
light snow
snow showers
Mid station 2150 m
2150m 1150m 800m 750m 600m

(2300m — 3089m)

snow report today

152
107
Machine Groomed 3 cm
15 days ago
7
21
1
partly cloudy
snow showers
light snow
light snow
snow showers
Mid station 2694 m
2400m 1100m 950m 800m 750m

(2377m — 2987m)

snow report today

165
65
Packed powder or groomed snow 8 cm
yesterday
24
30
3
clear
light snow
heavy snow
light snow
snow showers
Mid station 2682 m
2150m 900m 650m 800m 600m

(2424m — 3369m)

snow report today

241
152
Machine Groomed 1 cm
3 days ago
8
22
2
partly cloudy
snow showers
light snow
light snow
snow showers
Mid station 2896 m
2400m 1100m 950m 800m 750m

(2012m — 2499m)

snow report yesterday

76
36
Machine Groomed 1 cm
22 days ago
7
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
snow showers
snow showers
Mid station 2256 m
3550m 2550m 1650m 1200m 1100m

(1981m — 2621m)

snow report yesterday

1 cm
3 days ago
9
cloudy
clear
partly cloudy
light snow
snow showers
Mid station 2301 m
3500m 2500m 1500m 1200m 1050m

(1676m — 2103m)

snow report today

142
142
Machine Groomed 15 cm
yesterday
25
24
7
cloudy
light snow
light snow
snow showers
snow showers
Mid station 1890 m
1550m 900m 900m 700m 650m

(1941m — 2624m)

snow report today

Northstar at Tahoe webcam
167
105
Packed powder or groomed snow 7 cm
yesterday
12
15
4
clear
snow showers
light snow
snow showers
snow showers
Mid station 2282 m
2200m 1200m 950m 800m 650m

(1768m — 2255m)

snow report yesterday

11 cm
yesterday
25
29
11
clear
snow showers
moderate snow
light snow
snow showers
Mid station 2012 m
2050m 1150m 700m 650m 500m

(2023m — 2697m)

snow report today

229
124
Packed Powder 8 cm
yesterday
22
27
4
partly cloudy
snow showers
moderate snow
light snow
snow showers
Mid station 2360 m
2150m 1000m 700m 850m 650m

(2133m — 2498m)

snow report 2 days ago

152
152
Machine Groomed 2 cm
3 days ago
12
partly cloudy
clear
partly cloudy
light snow
light snow
Mid station 2316 m
3550m 3000m 1550m 1200m 1000m

(2041m — 2389m)

snow report today

122
51
Machine Groomed 2 cm
3 days ago
13
partly cloudy
clear
partly cloudy
light snow
light snow
Mid station 2215 m
3500m 2900m 1450m 1150m 1000m

(2057m — 2255m)

snow report yesterday

216
216
Machine Groomed 10 cm
yesterday
24
28
10
clear
snow showers
moderate snow
light snow
snow showers
Mid station 2156 m
2050m 1100m 700m 650m 500m

(1874m — 2743m)

snow report today

236
117
Machine Groomed 9 cm
yesterday
23
23
8
partly cloudy
light snow
moderate snow
light snow
snow showers
Mid station 2308 m
2100m 1100m 700m 600m 450m

(1554m — 1707m)

snow report yesterday

10 cm
yesterday
12
10
4
clear
snow showers
light snow
snow showers
snow showers
Mid station 1630 m
1450m 850m 650m 400m 250m

(2098m — 2555m)

snow report today

272
168
Machine Groomed 10 cm
yesterday
24
27
10
clear
snow showers
moderate snow
light snow
snow showers
Mid station 2326 m
2100m 1100m 700m 650m 500m

(2042m — 2291m)

snow report 22 days ago

1 cm
22 days ago
5
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
snow showers
snow showers
Mid station 2166 m
3550m 2550m 1650m 1250m 1100m

(2057m — 2240m)

snow report yesterday

137
137
Machine Groomed 9 cm
yesterday
17
21
7
clear
snow showers
light snow
snow showers
snow showers
Mid station 2148 m
2100m 1100m 750m 750m 500m

(2194m — 2438m)

snow report 15 days ago

5 cm
15 days ago
12
49
1
partly cloudy
snow showers
moderate snow
moderate snow
snow showers
Mid station 2316 m
2500m 1400m 1250m 850m 600m