October 2017 snowfall was strongest in the higher elevations of western Canada and the northern Rockies with some lesser amounts in Colorado. First half of November snowfall was high in the Pacific Northwest and inland northern regions, resulting in some early openings and deep snowpacks. Thanksgiving week brought widespread rain to 9,000 feet to the northern regions, degrading the snowpack at lower elevations. Snowpacks are still over 4 feet at Mt. Baker, Whistler and Grand Targhee. The farther south you go, the less snow there is, and some opening dates are being pushed back.
California: An early November storm only snowed more than a few inches north of Lake Tahoe and over 8,000 feet. The second week's
storm was much bigger though also mostly over 8,000 feet. Mt. Rose got 41-52 inches and is 83% open. Mammoth got 27 inches at Main
Lodge, 5+ feet up top and is 30% open. Thanksgiving week had a bit of rain followed by warm weather resulting in spring conditions.
Other snow totals and percents open: Squaw (24 inches, 18%), Kirkwood (24, 15%), Heavenly (23, 1%).
Pacific Northwest: The region had some October storms but the rain/snow line was above all but the alpine sectors of Whistler
and Mt. Bachelor. First half of November snowfall was widespread and many areas opened by November 18. The Thanksgiving week rain
reduced the Mt. Baker (now 83% open) and Whistler (124 inches snowfall, 32% open) base depths from 6 feet to 4 feet. Base depths
elsewhere are now in the 2 foot range. Other snowfalls since Nov. 1, percents open: Crystal (73 inches, 18%), Stevens (57, closed),
Hood Meadows (67, closed), Mt. Bachelor (68, 41-44, 15%).
Canadian Rockies and Interior B.C.: Snowfall was abundant in this region from late October through mid-November. Thanksgiving
week rain affected the Okanogan and Kootenay areas, though base depths declined only at Fernie, remaining near 3 feet at most
other areas. Snowfall since Nov. 1, openings if known: Big White (32 inches, 4%), Red Mt. (41, Dec. 9), Whitewater (55, Dec. 8),
Revelstoke (61, Dec. 2), Kicking Horse (85, Dec. 8), Fernie (69, Dec. 1), Lake Louise (69, 47%), Sunshine (86, 51%).
U. S. Northern Rockies: Grand Targhee had 45 inches October snowfall, another 74 so far in November and opened 82% on Nov. 17
and 100% by Thanksgiving. Interior Northwest areas got the rain and only Schweitzer (82 inches snowfall) is 9% open on a reduced
2 foot base. Even Targhee got a little recent rain and has a crusty surface on its 57-inch base. Snowfall, base depths, openings
if known: Jackson Hole (89 inches, 11%), Bridger (46, Dec. 8), Brundage (44, closed), Sun Valley (42, 14%).
Utah: Utah had minimal October snow and has been on the edge of November storms. Some opening dates have been delayed and any skiing
is on limited snowmaking. Snowfall totals, percents if open: Alta 18 inches, Snowbird 13 (3%), Brighton 29 (7%), Park City 20 (2%),
Northern and Central Colorado: A-Basin opened a run on snowmaking October 13 followed by Loveland on October 20. November snowfall
has been below average and all skiing is on a manmade base of no more than 18 inches. Snowfall and percents open: A-Basin (12%),
Breckenridge (32 inches, 6%), Copper (27, 5%), Keystone (26, 4%), Loveland (30, 9%), Steamboat (39, 1%), Winter Park (33, 5%).
Vail is 1% open.
Southern and Western Colorado: This region has been drier than those farther north, so all skiing is on limited snowmaking. The
Rocky Mountain Biological Lab at Gothic (between Crested Butte and Aspen) had 17 inches in October and 22 inches so far in November,
less than half of normal. Even Wolf Creek has had just 38 inches and reports 60% open but on a sketchy 12-14 inch base. Other snowfalls
and percents open: Crested Butte (12 inches, 3%), Purgatory (26, 3%), Telluride (12, closed). Aspen/Snowmass is 3% open and Taos 2%.
Advanced terrain is likely to be limited until after New Year's unless December is much snowier than average like last year.
Northeast: Killington was the first opening on November 8 as there was too much warm weather and rain in October. There has been
some recent snow and terrain expansions on snowmaking. Snowfall and/or percents open: Jay (29 inches, 4%), Stowe (19, 20%), Sugarbush
(1, 6%), Killington (7, 15%), Okemo (17%), Sugarloaf (6%), Sunday River (12%), Whiteface (26, 10%), Cannon (7, 15%), Le Massif (9, Dec. 2),
Tremblant (13%), Hunter (17%).
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