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MORE SNOW IN THE ALPS

The temperature has dropped with some snow falling as the excellent early season conditions in the Alps continue. One area could see well over 1m in the coming days. UPDATED

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There was a bit of a lull in the weather last week after all the snow earlier in the month, but it is now changing.

There is mixed weather across the Alps this weekend with snow and rain. In some places it has warmed up and others it has got colder.

But it looks like one part is about to get hammered by snow.

“The most extreme precipitation over the next few days is likely to be between Zermatt/Cervinia and the western Italian lakes, affecting resorts such as Saas-Fee, the Monte Rosa region and Macugnaga. These areas are all likely to see 1m to 1.5 m of snow at altitude this week, with some models predicting 3m or more,” said raser Wilkin from weathertoski.co.uk on Sunday.

He has compiled our full snow report further down this article.

“The rain/snow limit will start at around 1500-1700m but will tend to rise towards 2000m for a time mid-week before falling again later. However, it may remain lower than this under the most intense precipitation,” added Fraser.

We have a report on conditions in Zermatt from one of our readers who is on the slopes on Sunday.

Many more resorts are now opening.

Quick picture update on Saturday:

Saturday morning - Les Menuires

Saturday morning – Les Menuires

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sataurday morning - Val Thorens

Saturday morning – Val Thorens

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

jungfrau_500Saturday morning - Jungfrau

Saturday morning – Jungfrau

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There are fabulous conditions in the high resorts.

Arc1950, France

Arc1950, France

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“The snow is the best early Christmas present we could have as Christmas is a very special time for our resort as we welcome many, many families,” said the Director General of the Arc1950 tourist office, Nathalie Guidon, to PlanetSKI.

“It is so very important for everyone to get this amount of snow at altitude in the middle of November and we are already looking forward to our opening on December 10th , and Christmas at Arc1950 looks like it will be rather special,” added Nathalie.

And lower down it is good too.

The image below was taken by PlanetSKI reader, Tim Scott, on the slopes above Les Gets in the Portes du Soleil.

Les Gets, France

Les Gets, France

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Down at home though it wasn’t quite so good for the chickens Wink

Les Gets, France

Les Gets, France

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tim runs the ski school, LGS

It is the best November snowfall in the Alps for decades as we have reported here.

Over in the USA we’re sad to say conditions are the opposite.

It has been the worst November for snow since records began – see here for our story on the US snow drought.

But further North in Canada it is a different story.

Sunshine Village, Banff

Sunshine Village, Banff

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kicking Horse, Canada

Kicking Horse, Canada

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our full and detailed snow report below, that was filed on Thursday 17th November comes from Fraser Wilkin at www.weathertoski.co.uk.

Snow conditions in the Alps remain excellent for mid-November, despite the recent increase in temperature leading to a steady thaw at low altitude.

As we have previously reported, resorts with lots of skiing above 2000m (such as Val Thorens, Val d’Isère, Cervinia, Saas-Fee, Obergurgl and Ischgl – to name just a few) now have a secure snow base for the season.

On the other hand, resorts where most or all of the skiing is below 2000m (such as Morzine and Kitzbühel) will lose much of their natural snow cover over the coming days, and still have lots to play for before the season “proper” kicks off in a month or so time.

The weather in the Alps will be highly variable over the next few days but most areas will see some new snow later tomorrow and over the weekend.

Early next week some particularly heavy snow is likely at altitude in the south-western Alps (e.g. Monte Rosa region) while a strong Foehn brings drier, milder but very windy conditions to the northern side of the Alps. More on this in our detailed weather report for the Alps tomorrow…

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Austria

There was fresh snow across many of the Austrian glaciers yesterday but lower down it fell as rain, especially in the northern Austrian Alps, where it melted some of the low-lying.

All eight glaciers resorts are open and, weather-permitting, are skiing very well right now. Some of them such as Hintertux (25/105cm) and Sölden (10/130cm) now also have a reasonable amount of non-glacial terrain open.

 Non-glacial Obergurgl (10/45cm) also begins its operations today with respectable, rather than exceptional, snow cover for the time of year. 

Preparations are going well for Ischgl’s opening next Thursday - Photo: ischgl.com

Preparations are going well for Ischgl’s opening next Thursday – Photo: ischgl.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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France

Snow depths remain very impressive across the northern French Alps, particularly at altitude.

The two best offerings in France are Tignes (45/120cm) and Val Thorens (60/130cm), the latter opening on Saturday, a week earlier than originally planned.

 There are also a handful of other weekend-only possibilities available, including Alpe d’Huez (55/90cm) and, as of this weekend, La Clusaz (10/80cm). 

Plenty of snow still in Tignes, even at resort level - 17 November 2016 - Photo: tignes.net

Plenty of snow still in Tignes, even at resort level – 17 November 2016 – Photo: tignes.net

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Italy

The deepest snow in Italy is at altitude in the north-western Alps. Indeed, Cervinia (50/190cm) remains the best bet in Italy, with top to bottom snow cover and skiing possible down to resort level as of this weekend.

 Other more limited options include Val Senales (10/90cm), Solda (10/60cm) and, at weekends, only Madonna di Campiglio (depths not available). 

Good early snow up top in Madonna di Campiglio, which will open for the first time this weekend - 17 November 2016 - Photo: funiviocampiglio.it

Good early snow up top in Madonna di Campiglio, which will open for the first time this weekend – 17 November 2016 – Photo: funiviocampiglio.it

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Switzerland

Snow conditions remain excellent in Switzerland, particularly at altitude and in the west where snow depths are exceptional for mid-November.

 Zermatt (20/150cm) and Saas-Fee (40/135cm) are still the best options in Switzerland, though there are plenty more limited possibilities.

Some of these are still only open at weekends, like Verbier (25/125cm) and Crans Montana (60/130cm), while others like Glacier 3000 (0/115cm) are open daily.

 Andermatt is another high profile name joining the action this Saturday. 

Looking good for mid-November in Verbier - 17 November 2016 - Photo: verbier.net

Looking good for mid-November in Verbier – 17 November 2016 – Photo: verbier.net

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rest of Europe

A handful of Scandinavian ski resorts are open in a limited capacity, otherwise there is very little skiing possible in Europe outside the Alps right now.

Norway’s Geilo has two lifts operating and an 80cm upper base, while Finland’s Ruka has five lifts running and a 30cm upper base. 

North America

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Canada

Sunshine Village (80cm upper base) is the only area offering any proper lift-served skiing in Canada right now, with decent on-piste snow conditions and 74 open trails.

 

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USA

Skiing options remain very limited in the western US. In California, Mammoth (15/95cm) had six trails open on Wednesday, while Colorado’s Arapahoe Basin (45cm upper base) had just three.

For daily weather bulletins  from Fraser then follow it all at www.weathertoski.co.uk.

See here for the main PlanetSKI news page with all the latest stories from the world of snowsports.

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