Ski Season – good or bad this year?

By 5 June, 2008 34

What’s with the heatwave we are having?  Will we hold out yet again in desperate hope of a ski season?  Has the outrageous consumption of fossilised ameoba killed my snow forever?

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34 Responses to Ski Season – good or bad this year?
#1
shanefos8:49 am, 05 Jun 08

Wasn’t 2007 one of the best ski seasons on record?
And I thought I saw a report on ABC a few weeks ago saying that they (BOM) are predicting another bumper season this year….
Still, it’s hardly been a cold start to Winter this year, so fair question.
But, given it costs a squillion dollars to go skiing these days, I’ll just be happy if I get to see a bit of snow on the distant mountains to the south of Canberra….

#2
Thumper9:15 am, 05 Jun 08

And hasn’t this been posted and discussed before? Well, similiar anyway.

Like, a few weeks ago.

http://the-riotact.com/?p=7583

And here’s something

http://www.theage.com.au/national/melbourne-set-for-cold-winter-20080530-2jry.html

#3
Jazz9:42 am, 05 Jun 08

not everyone is on RiotACT as often as you thumper :)

#4
ant10:04 am, 05 Jun 08

2007 was not “the best season ever”, in fact, it was a fairly ordinary one. The ski resorts hype each season and the media helps them. BOM certainly haven’t forecasted a great season either, however the resorts’ paid shill Ken Ring has. As usual. As he does every snow season.

This photo of Twynam (3rd highest peak, on the main range) was taken on Sunday. Ski season opens this weekend.
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v105/EmuBobOz/1-2Jun08006smll.jpg

Smiggins had made a tiny strip of snow, next to their magic carpet.

This cold SE wind today might help bring temperatures down, in fact it’s cold enough today for it to be snowing up there, if there’s any moisture. Let’s check it out…
http://www.snowcams.com.au/
Looks like Perisher made snow on front valley (quite a lot of it) and it’s turned to frozen chunks of rubble. Thredbo evidently made snow on friday flat, and most of it has gone with the rain. Rest of the pictures tell the story pretty well.

Things could change, but it hasn’t been a good run-up to the winter. The best winters have a long, slow descent into cold right through autumn. We had one brief cold snap, and then it was back into quite a pronounced Indian Summer, right up until this week. And there’s every chance it might return when this coastal system leaves. It’s way too warm and WAY too dry.

I wouldn’t be paying any money up front for June or July.

#5
ant10:05 am, 05 Jun 08

OK. Why is the post I made above (that no one can see yet) “awaiting moderation”?

[Ed. (Jazz) we automoderate any post that has hyperlinks in it, just to make sure they're a) correct, and b) not linking to something we dont want them to]

#6
canberracafe.com10:07 am, 05 Jun 08

Well if the ski fields keep going this way, hopefully Tiger Airways will start up jatropha fuelled flights direct from Canberra to Christchurch for better and cheaper snow fun!

http://www.news.com.au/travel/story/0,26058,23813585-5014090,00.html

#7
Thumper10:14 am, 05 Jun 08

My post was moderated as well?????

#8
ant10:21 am, 05 Jun 08

It’s rather annoying. I’ve stuck in some links to photos and the current snowcams which will answer all questions. Maybe that’s why it’s “awaiting moderation”. Maybe I should just switch to abusing people and using asci swear words, that seems to get through with no problems!

#9
ant10:40 am, 05 Jun 08

OK, I give up. By the time my comment gets un-moderated, the discussion will be over. So I’ll do it in chunks. I think having two urls is what’s triggered it.
So, first bit:

2007 was not “the best season ever”, in fact, it was a fairly ordinary one. The ski resorts hype each season and the media helps them. BOM certainly haven’t forecasted a great season either, however the resorts’ paid shill Ken Ring has. As usual. As he does every snow season.

This photo of Twynam (3rd highest peak, on the main range) was taken on Sunday. Ski season opens this weekend.
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v105/EmuBobOz/1-2Jun08006smll.jpg

Smiggins had made a tiny strip of snow, next to their magic carpet.

(let’s see if this gets through).

#10
ant10:42 am, 05 Jun 08

OK, it got through. So I’ll bung up the second bit:

This cold SE wind today might help bring temperatures down, in fact it’s cold enough today for it to be snowing up there, if there’s any moisture. Let’s check it out…
http://www.snowcams.com.au/

Looks like Perisher made snow on front valley (quite a lot of it) and it’s turned to frozen chunks of rubble. Thredbo evidently made snow on friday flat, and most of it has gone with the rain. Rest of the pictures tell the story pretty well.

Things could change, but it hasn’t been a good run-up to the winter. The best winters have a long, slow descent into cold right through autumn. We had one brief cold snap, and then it was back into quite a pronounced Indian Summer, right up until this week. And there’s every chance it might return when this coastal system leaves. It’s way too warm and WAY too dry.

I wouldn’t be paying any money up front for June or July.
(ends)

[i]Your comment is awaiting moderation. [/i]

You don’t say.

#11
Skidbladnir10:44 am, 05 Jun 08

Yes, moderation is annoying.

But:
Anything with one of the common swearwords gets moderated.
Anything with more than one external hyperlink in it gets moderated.

#12
stereo henry10:53 am, 05 Jun 08

just had a look at some snow cams… looks bleak to me

#13
canberracafe.com11:05 am, 05 Jun 08

New Zealand it is then.. Looks like a permanent state of affairs :-( If there was any evidence of global warming, this would be it.

#14
ant11:22 am, 05 Jun 08

Never believe the reports. Use the snowcams (all of them) and read any “punter” reports you can find on forums. I guess we’ve all had those days driving down the mountain, hearing some chicky-babe on the radio resort report breathlessly recounting a day that was plainly at a different resort from that which you were skiing at.

#15
canberracafe.com11:24 am, 05 Jun 08

Was it better 10 – 20 years ago? 30 years ago?

#16
ant11:31 am, 05 Jun 08

Yes, it was. It’s been going downhill steadily. Sometimes we’ll get a good season, but they’re fewer and more isolated. Last really decent season I remember was 2000. In the 50s they got some amazing massive snowfalls. Ditto 60s and 70s. In the 80s it began to get more variable, there were some massive years but also some shockers. 90s were a lottery, and this decade has been un-spectacular.

Some reckon building all those dams up there created heat sinks which have affected the snow, and it does fit.

The snow used to go for longer, there was more of it, and it used to come down a lot further. Our ski club used to have a ski field on Mt franklin, and it was pretty reliable too.

#17
canberracafe.com12:22 pm, 05 Jun 08

I blame China, and Americans and their SUV’s. The price of oil will save our ski fields. I hope petrol goes up to $5 a litre world wide. Then we will find something else to use like jatropha for fuel.

So… Australia for hiking in the patchy snow, forget skiing, and New Zealand for actually doing anything decent from now on.

What are costs like to go to New Zealand and travelling times required? Okay for a long weekend or really need a week?

#18
Kramer12:45 pm, 05 Jun 08

Yep, that’s right anything with 2+ links goes into the mod queue. It stops the spammers, especially those that like to go into the old stories and astroturf themselves…

#19
Kramer12:49 pm, 05 Jun 08

Folks, it’s time you all realised that we live on one of the driest and hottest contents, so snow is not really our forte. The ski resorts in Australia are only just starting to twig that they can make far more money running mountain biking, and it has virtually no reliance on mother nature (other than minimal snowfalls – which is what we see these days). Thredbo has been OK for mountain biking for a few years, but Mt Buller are gearing up to go big this year. So sell off your skis and snowboards while you still can, and buy a mountain bike :-D

#20
deye12:58 pm, 05 Jun 08

What heatwave ?
There usually isn’t anything but man made to ski on on opening weekend. The “official opening” and the reality of the seasons are two entirely different things. If it gets to the end of the month without real snow, then maybe start to worry.

#21
RuffnReady3:35 pm, 05 Jun 08

canberracafe.com said :

If there was any evidence of global warming, this would be it.

An unfortunate choice of words given that there is MOUNTAINS of evidence for it, tens of thousands of peer reviewed studies from a range of scientific disciplines.

As for snow fall, IIRC, isn’t snowfall highly correlated with the ENSO? Aren’t the great snow years like 1981 generally also La Ninas? I’m too busy to research this right now, maybe someone else can chime in.

BTW, 1981 was AWESOME – we had to dig our way out of the lodge! There was 3m of snow in Perisher!

#22
canberracafe.com7:52 pm, 05 Jun 08

I envy those who got to enjoy ski seasons :-(

#23
ant8:39 pm, 05 Jun 08

Yeah, there’s a piccy up at Charlotte’s of their Ridge chairlift top station down in a giant canyon of snow. Rather hard to imagine nowadays! That was 1981. But remember, the following year, winter forgot to come and we got a thimblfull of snow (literally).

Actually, some la ninas can be utter crep: 1998! What a shocker. It was a great la nina, but up at the snow every snowfall started with rain and ended with rain. The season ended one Saturday night, we’d skiied on the glop on Saturday, then it rained all night. The ropes and cones and bollards were still standing at the t-bars, but all the snow was gone, vanished.

Some el ninos can be OK too, it depends on the severity and some other things.

Thing is, even if we get some “normal” weather systems rolling in from the west (there’s one hovering for next week, maybe), it’s a drought and so far inland precip has been rubbish. There’s no base up there yet, there’s nothing. So we’ll need quite a bit to crush down teh bushes. So it’ll be a while before there’s a season happening.

#24
Felix the Cat9:01 pm, 05 Jun 08

canberracafe.com said :

I blame China, and Americans and their SUV’s.

I blame John Stanhope…

#25
Bungle9:51 pm, 05 Jun 08

Last years season was a good one. The snow in July was some of the best I’ve ever seen – even as good as NZ snow. It got a bit slushy towards the end of the season but I think it lasted longer than normal.

#26
canberracafe.com8:46 am, 06 Jun 08

It was okay I suppose but being above zero during the day it still got a bit mushy and icy. I hope they fix this global warming thing.

#27
la mente torbida9:45 am, 06 Jun 08

I remember following the snowplough into Guthega in the late seventies….150cm of snow overnight….took us 45 minutes to commando crawl from the carpark to the lodge.

#28
la mente torbida9:46 am, 06 Jun 08

also agree, there was probably 2 weeks of great snow last year (lucky I was there for 1 of them). The rest of the season was disappointing.

#29
canberracafe.com9:49 am, 06 Jun 08

Back when we had ski seasons, what were opening weekends like? Now the reports and conversation seems to revolve around optimistic hope each year.

Well I take comfort in petrol zooming to $3 a litre world wide, perhaps it will at least slow the destruction of our ski fields a little.

#30
Thumper10:01 am, 06 Jun 08

All you need is a cold front from the south and there will be plenty of snow;)

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