We called it: Spring skiing this season out west is going to be the best ever, and now the forecasts are confirming it. According to the Powderchasers, two to four feet of fresh snow will likely dump across the Sierras, from Mammoth to Squaw Valley, starting on Friday.
The “atmospheric river” is the same meteorological gift Golden State shredders have to thank for this winter’s snow of massive proportions. So far 2017 has clenched record-setting seasonal snowfall at Heavenly and Northstar in Tahoe and solidified January as the snowiest month on record for Mammoth and Squaw.
It’s been warm at both Mammoth and Squaw recently, with temperatures reaching the low 50s in the past week. But all that will change come Friday, when a cold snap is expected to allow the snow to fall heavily from Friday through Saturday. For some mountains in the Tahoe area, the snowfall could even see a four-day lifespan, with chances of a secondary storm blowing in and continuing to drop precipitation through Monday.
While Squaw is only expecting to receive a “few feet,” (like that’s nothing), Mammoth’s massive forecast for receiving up to four feet — and possibly five feet at the mountain's summit — is the real gift from the snow gods. According to Powderchaser Steve, Mammoth is where to be. Duh. “Currently my speculation is Mammoth will come out ahead of the others with a slight emphasis on southern resorts,” he says on the Powderchasers website. “Higher elevations may also sneak out as much as three to four feet at the summit! All resorts around the Lake Tahoe region should benefit nicely also. You’re not going to get skunked, so take your pick from Kirkwood, Squaw, Heavenly, Sugarbowl, Mount Rose, Diamond Peak, or Mammoth…”
This storm comes on the tail of another that dropped several feet of snow earlier this week and had resorts — namely, Mammoth again — digging themselves out and removing snow to actually improve conditions. If this keeps up for the Golden State, maybe Squaw will have some snow to play in on their July 4 closing weekend. It’s not too late to get the best bang for your spring skiing buck, either. The Cali4nia pass is a 2017 pass that you can use now and next winter. The pass went on sale last month and is available at the early bird price of $749 until Wednesday. The Cali4nia pass allows access to Bear Mountain and Snow Summit now and at Mammoth starting April 11 until the season's end. Think of it as an investment in your powderhound happiness after surviving the five-year drought.