Latest snow report
Updated: 6.35pm Monday 30 January 2017
Milder Atlantic air is making inroads into the Alps which means more variable snow quality than last week, when it was mostly sunny but cold.
On Monday and Tuesday we will see snow at altitude across the northern Alps, but also some rain low down. The southern Alps will miss most of the precipitation at first, but will then benefit from a new storm later in the week.
All in all, snow conditions are likely to deteriorate somewhat at low altitude over the coming days, especially across the northern Alps where some rain will fall. Many high resorts will see a little snow, however, which will become more significant across the southern Alps later in the week.
The recent cold spell has come to an end, which means that snow conditions in Austria are now more variable than they have been recently.
There will be some fresh snow over the next day or two, mostly in the northern Austrian Alps and above 1500m - benefiting resorts such as Ischgl (25/65cm) and St Anton (50/145cm). Watch out for rain at resort level though, and more generally in lower resorts such as Kitzbühel (70/85cm) and Söll (65/75cm).
On-piste snow conditions in French ski resorts are not as consistently good as they were last week, thanks to an increase in temperature, cloud cover and humidity, especially in the lower resorts of the northern Alps.
Avoriaz (80/90cm) is expecting a little snow on Monday and Tuesday but it is likely to turn to rain below 1800m, which will affect the quality of the snow in lower resorts such as Les Gets (35/75cm) and Megève (40/110cm).
Weather permitting, the best skiing this week will be in higher resorts, such as Tignes (70/135cm) and Val Thorens (90/160cm) though, even here, good off-piste opportunities are relatively limited.
The best natural snow cover in Italy remains in the west, where there was further snow over the weekend. Cervinia currently has settled snow depths of 35/115cm, while Sestriere has 50/140cm.
Further east, resorts may be much more reliant on artificial snow but there is still plenty of good piste-skiing to be had. The Dolomiti Superski area (e.g. Val Gardena, Alta Badia) has well over 1000km of runs open on a very modest (mostly artificial) base of just 20-30cm.
Some Swiss ski resorts will see a little new snow on Monday and Tuesday but, with milder air in the mix, it will turn to rain below 1500-1800m. Snow conditions are therefore quite mixed across Switzerland, with the best skiing in high altitude resorts such as Zermatt (5/120cm) and Saas-Fee (17/144cm).
Further north, Villars (40/80cm) still has good cover but snow quality will be less consistent than we saw last week due to the milder weather.
Rest of Europe
Snow cover in the Pyrenees is generally impressive, especially in the east. Andorra’s Soldeu has base depths of 100/150cm, while Spain’s Baqueira Beret has 140/180cm.
Bulgarian ski resorts haven’t seen any significant snow for a while but, on-piste at least, conditions remain excellent thanks to the big storms earlier in the month. Base depths in Borovets are 130/155cm depending on altitude.
It’s snowing in many Norwegian resorts today, heaviest in the west where 20cm is reported in Voss (45/60cm). Further north, Finland’s Ruka has been bone dry over the last seven days. However, the pistes remain in excellent shape with 55cm packed down mid-mountain.
Scotland’s disappointing season continues with only the Lecht (5cm) able to offer some very limited terrain.
Snow cover remains impressive across many western US resorts despite a milder weather spell of weather. Alta (277cm mid-mountain base) saw over 1m of snow earlier last week, with more forecast this Thursday and Friday.
Wyoming’s Jackson Hole (185/270cm) and California’s Mammoth (431/762cm) are also forecast significant snow on Thursday/Friday, with lighter flurries expected in Colorado, where Vail currently has 137cm of settled snow mid-mountain.
Many western Canadian resorts saw a few centimetres of new snow yesterday, including Kicking Horse (147cm mid-mountain) and Revelstoke (179cm mid-mountain), both of which are in decent shape right now.
Closer to the coast, Whistler (210cm mid-mountain base) is also offering excellent skiing right now with 5cm of new snow and relatively cold temperatures forecast for the rest of the week.
Next full snow report will be on Thursday 2 February 2017,
but see Today in the Alps for regular updates