Big Snowfalls in South America But Ski Resorts Are Closed

It’s been one of the best starts to winter for years but the coronavirus pandemic means ski resorts are not able to open.


The Andes mountain range in Chile and Argentina has had large dumps of snow in the past week with more forecast.

Some resorts say as much as 1.2 to 1.5 metres has fallen.

While it’s great to see, skiers and snowboarders are having to sit it out and that may the case for the whole season.

This video was posted by Nevados de Chillán in Chile…

☁️❄️☁️❄️☁️ nivel de #powder en #nevadosdechillan ✨🏔

Posted by Nevados de Chillán on Thursday, 25 June 2020

With the whole of South America hit badly by Covid-19 and the number of cases rising, ski areas are unable to open.

They have no idea when, or if, that will change this winter.

Usually the South American season starts around mid-June.

“The latest storm left 4 feet of new snow and there’s more on the way. Even though we can’t open yet, we are happy to see winter again!” announced Ski Portillo in Chile.

Portillo is hoping it can save its season but it is closed for the foreseeable future.

“Unfortunately, the situation has not improved as COVID-19 is at peak levels now in Chile and we’re still in quarantine here and flights and travel continue to be restricted,” Henry and Miguel Purcell say in a message on the Ski Portillo website.

“Sadly we have decided to postpone our opening indefinitely until we can see improvement and we will keep everyone informed on any news.”

Las Leñas in Argentina had a deep covering of snow at the weekend.

“This is how the Valley of Las Leñas woke up today! The landscapes are back with the best snow,” the resort said on 27th June.

However Las Leñas has announced that it will not open this winter at all because of the public health emergency.

Neither will La Hoya, also in Argentina.

Both Chile and Argentina’s borders are closed and there seems little chance of the region opening up to outsiders for tourism until long after the southern hemisphere winter is over.

The Chilean government has extended its State of Emergency until mid-September.

Argentina, which is reported to have one of the strictest quarantines of anywhere, has banned all international and domestic flights until at least 1st September.

Whether some resorts can open for locals while there’s still snow on the ground is a big question.

In a good year, skiing can continue until late September or even into October.