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 Another very snowy week in the US with some resorts in the west reporting another metre of snowfall and also consistently good coverage across almost all of the country - only the far northwest around Washington State continues to see things a little warmer than they'd like. Mt Baker, the world's snowiest resort on average, has had to delay its planned opening due to inadequate snow cover so far.

It's a similar picture up in Alaska where Eaglecrest Ski Area has postponed its opening day planned for last Saturday 1st December to next Saturday 8th December due to warm temperatures and a lack of natural snowfall there too. Unusually, in fact, Trollhaugen (30/183cm) in the Midwest continues to post the deepest base in the country Western resorts are catching up fast and, perhaps more importantly, are also building their resort level bases, with several passing the metre mark there - the first to do so in the northern hemisphere so far this season. Mammoth for example now has a 102/178cm base, the second deepest in the world while Brighton resort in Utah is posting 145/145cm after another 65cm in 72 hours earlier this week. Many other resorts in California, Colorado, Utah and Wyoming and posting similar impressive numbers for the start of December with many claiming this is the best start to the season in a decade or more and very different to a year ago. Conditions also remain good in the east and Midwest although the rate of snowfall has slowed down here and indeed the next few days are looking quieter across much of the country.

Summary of forecast snowfall and ski conditions for resorts in USA - California. Fresh snow is forecast at 2resorts. Powder is reported at 0 resorts and 11 are reporting good piste conditions.

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Recent Eyeball Snow Reports for USA - California

All resorts

Best piste conditions (11)

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)
Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun

(2083m — 2632m)

snow report today

97
66
Packed 9 cm
6 days ago
6
clear
clear
clear
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
Mid station 2358 m
2550m 3100m 2400m 2450m 2350m

(1981m — 2164m)

snow report 5 days ago

Alta Sierra at Shirley Meadows webcam
2 cm
5 days ago
1
clear
clear
partly cloudy
clear
partly cloudy
Mid station 2072 m
3550m 3550m 3250m 3350m 3100m

(2177m — 2684m)

snow report yesterday

91
51
Packed Powder
3
clear
clear
cloudy
clear
clear
Mid station 2430 m
3450m 3550m 3500m 3450m 3350m

(2012m — 2593m)

snow report today

89
89
Packed Powder 7 cm
6 days ago
12
clear
clear
clear
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
Mid station 2302 m
2750m 3200m 2250m 2500m 2350m

(2179m — 2684m)

snow report 4 days ago

2 cm
4 days ago
3
clear
clear
cloudy
clear
clear
Mid station 2432 m
3450m 3600m 3500m 3500m 3350m

(2195m — 2378m)

snow report yesterday

56
56
Packed Powder 8 cm
6 days ago
7
clear
clear
clear
partly cloudy
cloudy
Mid station 2286 m
2350m 3050m 2400m 2450m 2300m

(2133m — 2652m)

snow report today

51
36
Variable Conditions
12
clear
clear
snow showers
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
Mid station 2392 m
2800m 3000m 2500m 2750m 2650m

(2143m — 2655m)

snow report 6 days ago

45 cm
6 days ago
8
clear
clear
partly cloudy
clear
partly cloudy
Mid station 2399 m
3200m 3350m 2700m 2950m 2700m

(1859m — 2073m)

snow report 6 days ago

4 cm
6 days ago
1
3
clear
clear
snow showers
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
Mid station 1966 m
1650m 2350m 2400m 2350m 2050m

(2012m — 2499m)

snow report today

76
53
Packed Powder 6 cm
6 days ago
12
clear
clear
clear
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
Mid station 2256 m
2850m 3300m 2400m 2650m 2500m

(2143m — 2362m)

snow report today

Variable Conditions
6
clear
clear
clear
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
Mid station 2252 m
2350m 3050m 2400m 2450m 2300m

(1923m — 2015m)

snow report 6 days ago

1 cm
6 days ago
4
clear
clear
clear
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
Mid station 1969 m
2550m 3100m 2500m 2550m 2450m

(2002m — 3068m)

snow report yesterday

Heavenly webcam
91
46
Packed Powder 9 cm
6 days ago
4
clear
clear
clear
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
Mid station 2535 m
2650m 3200m 2750m 2700m 2700m

(1899m — 2402m)

snow report today

89
25
Packed Powder 9 cm
6 days ago
5
clear
clear
clear
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
Mid station 2150 m
2650m 3150m 2500m 2550m 2450m

(2300m — 3089m)

snow report yesterday

opens in 9 days
8
clear
partly cloudy
clear
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
Mid station 2694 m
2900m 3250m 2500m 2700m 2600m

(2377m — 2987m)

snow report yesterday

117
51
Packed Powder 19 cm
6 days ago
11
clear
clear
clear
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
Mid station 2682 m
2650m 3150m 2350m 2500m 2400m

(2424m — 3369m)

snow report today

Mammoth Mountain webcam
152
102
Packed Powder 20 cm
6 days ago
8
clear
clear
clear
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
Mid station 2896 m
3000m 3300m 2600m 2800m 2700m

(2012m — 2499m)

snow report today

61
30
Machine Groomed 33 cm
5 days ago
clear
clear
cloudy
clear
clear
Mid station 2256 m
3550m 3600m 3400m 3400m 3250m

(1981m — 2621m)

snow report yesterday

51
25
Machine Groomed 33 cm
5 days ago
clear
clear
partly cloudy
clear
clear
Mid station 2301 m
3600m 3650m 3400m 3450m 3250m

(1676m — 2103m)

snow report yesterday

2 cm
today
12
15
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
snow showers
light snow
light snow
Mid station 1890 m
1550m 2700m 1850m 1950m 2000m

(1941m — 2624m)

snow report today

Northstar at Tahoe webcam
74
46
Packed Powder 12 cm
6 days ago
4
clear
clear
clear
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
Mid station 2282 m
2350m 3100m 2550m 2600m 2500m

(1768m — 2255m)

snow report 6 days ago

3 cm
6 days ago
7
clear
clear
clear
partly cloudy
cloudy
Mid station 2012 m
2400m 3050m 2350m 2450m 2300m

(2023m — 2697m)

snow report today

119
94
Machine Groomed 13 cm
6 days ago
8
clear
clear
clear
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
Mid station 2360 m
2650m 3150m 2450m 2500m 2450m

(2133m — 2498m)

snow report yesterday

Snow Summit webcam
91
51
Packed Powder
2
clear
clear
cloudy
clear
clear
Mid station 2316 m
3450m 3600m 3500m 3500m 3350m

(2041m — 2389m)

snow report yesterday

opens in 2 days 13 cm
5 days ago
1
clear
clear
cloudy
clear
clear
Mid station 2215 m
3500m 3600m 3500m 3500m 3350m

(2057m — 2255m)

snow report yesterday

64
64
Packed Powder 7 cm
6 days ago
7
clear
clear
clear
partly cloudy
cloudy
Mid station 2156 m
2350m 3050m 2400m 2450m 2300m

(1874m — 2743m)

snow report today

114
74
Packed 8 cm
6 days ago
6
clear
clear
clear
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
Mid station 2308 m
2500m 3100m 2400m 2450m 2350m

(1554m — 1707m)

snow report 2 days ago

3 cm
2 days ago
9
clear
clear
moderate rain
partly cloudy
snow showers
Mid station 1630 m
1850m 2400m 2100m 2200m 2000m

(2098m — 2555m)

snow report today

114
56
Machine Groomed 8 cm
6 days ago
7
clear
clear
clear
partly cloudy
cloudy
Mid station 2326 m
2400m 3050m 2400m 2450m 2300m

(2042m — 2291m)

snow report 5 days ago

19 cm
5 days ago
clear
clear
partly cloudy
clear
clear
Mid station 2166 m
3550m 3600m 3400m 3400m 3250m

(2057m — 2240m)

snow report today

Tahoe Donner webcam
51
46
Variable Conditions 7 cm
6 days ago
4
clear
clear
clear
partly cloudy
partly cloudy
Mid station 2148 m
2300m 3050m 2400m 2450m 2400m

(2194m — 2438m)

snow report yesterday

17 cm
6 days ago
7
clear
clear
partly cloudy
clear
partly cloudy
Mid station 2316 m
3050m 3350m 2700m 2850m 2650m