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SPRING SKIING IS HERE
Thursday March 30, 2017 - Email this article to a friend

As the Easter holidays start there have been warm conditions across the mountains with some good snow at altitude. Check out all the details in the updated PlanetSKI snow report. UPDATED

Here on PlanetSKI we like to keep a close eye on the snow across the mountains - the Alps, the Pyrenees, the Rockies and beyond.

We have a main snow report each Thursday looking at current condtions and the forecast. 

And we update it  with details from our reporters and readers around the mountains:

Tuesday 4th April

And the latest pictures we have come from Cauterets in the French Pyrenees.

It has seen more fresh snow and now reports 280cm at the top of the resort and 200cm on the lower slopes.

Cauterets, French PyreneesCauterets, French Pyrenees

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cauterets, French PyreneesCauterets, French Pyrenees

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cauterets, French PyreneesCauterets, French Pyrenees

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cauterets is about to have some significant investement - see here for an earleir PlanetSKI story on the resort and its future plans.

Other areas of the Pyrennes have done well too as we reported yesterday, Monday 3rd April.

And here is what it is like across the range in Spain.

Massella and La Molina close at the end of April and there is plenty of snow left.

La Molina, Spanish PyreneesMassella, Spanish Pyrenees

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Monday 3rd April

It has turned into another bluebird day in some of the high resorts in the French Alps.

They have some of the best conditions in the Alps at the moment.

"Ski conditions near perfect, a foot of new powder off piste, although windblown in places. Pistes in very good condition however getting slushy at the end of the day. Piste crowded at times," said one of our readers, Michael Pettifer from MPI Brokers, who is currently in Val Thorens.

Val Thorens, FranceVal Thorens, France

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And let's not forget the Pyrenees that has also seen the snow.

There has been 30cm of fresh snow and we have just been sent these pictures of the Grand Tourmalet from PlanetSKI reader, Vanessa Fisher.

She will be in the area later this week and reporting back on Spring in the French Pyrenees.

Grand Tourmalet, French PyreneesGrand Tourmalet, French Pyrenees

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grand Tourmalet, French PyreneesGrand Tourmalet, French Pyrenees

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grand Tourmalet, French PyreneesGrand Tourmalet, French Pyrenees

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Elsewhere in the Pyrenees the PlanetSKI editor, James Cove, has been visiting Andorra - see here for his reports.

PlanetSKI's Chief Reporter Jane Peel has arrived in Laax, Switzerland, where she will be covering The Brits, The British Freeski and Snowboard championships. See here for her preview of the event which starts on Tuesday.

"There has been no fresh snow and you have to go up above 2,000 metres to get the best conditions.  Below 1,800 metres it's really heavy going and the run back into Laax base station which is at 1,100 metres has been closed as there is insufficient snow," Jane said.

"It's been sunny with some clouds today and very warm."

Laax Vorab glacierLaax up high

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LaaxLaax down low

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sunday 2nd April

Snow is faling in parts of the western Alps as a new storm moves in.

Some of the best snow is in Val d'Isere and Tignes.

"Great to get fresh snow in Tignes at the weekend  and with a blue bird today it's been a real treat. Amazing powder up high," said PlanetSKI reporter, Squash Falconer from Tignes.

Tignes, FranceTignes, France

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"We arrrived in Val d'Isere on Saturday and awoke up to around 15cm in town with more up on the mountains," said PlanetSKI reader Natatsha Cove who is in the French resort on a University ski trip.

Val d'Isere, FranceVal d'Isere, France

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"As expected, it has been snowing in some south-western parts of the Alps. The heaviest snow has been falling close to the French-Italian border from about Val d'Isère southwards," said the alpine weather expert, Fraser Wilkin from weathertoski.co.uk, on Sunday morning.
 
I"ndeed, this morning Val d'Isère itself reports 18cm of new snow in the village and as much as 40cm up on the Pisaillas glacier. Other resorts that have significant new snow (at least at altitude) include Bonneval-sur-Arc, Val Cenis, Sestriere, Montgenèvre, Pila, Cervinia, Zermatt, Saas-Fee and the Monte Rosa region, to name a few, The rain/snow limit has generally been between 1500m and 1800m, but a bit lower in some western Italian valleys."

Here at PlanetSKI we will be udating this article with more pictures and reports shortly.

Thursday 30th March

Conditions are warm out in the Alps at the moment with melting snow low down.

However there are still some great conditions high up, particularly in some French resorts after fresh snow fell last weekend.

PlanetSKI's chief reporter, Jane Peel, is currently in Tignes enjoying the Spring skiing.

PlanetSKI's senior news reporter, Katie Bamber, is in Les Menuires in Les3Vallees with Spring conditions.

There have been some good conditions in the Pyrenees too.

"Well, we have had weird and wonderful weather over the last couple of days here in Andorra, big dumps of snow followed the next day by a glorious blue skies, this has led to some of the best bluebird powder days of the season," said PlanetSKI reader, Ian Coles, from Andorra Resorts.

"I was over in Arcalis on Tuesday and in the six years I have worked in Andorra I don't know if I've seen better conditions - and it's the end of March! We have empty slopes and great conditions for people to be enjoying over our last few weeks of the season," Ian added.

Pas de la Casa, AndorraPas de la Casa, Andorra

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vallnord, AndorraVallnord, Andorra

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Check out the latest blog from the PlanetSKI editor, James Cove, as he experiences action, adrenalin and adventure in Andorra.

And we have just been sent the image below by PlanetSKI reader, Holger Gassler, from the Stubai glacier in the Tirol in Austria.

Stubai, Tirol - AustriaStubai, Tirol - Austria

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meanwhile the PlanetSKI social media editor, Kisia Cove, is across the pond in Sun Peaks in Canada.


And if you are planning to ski over the next few weeks then checkout this report from the PlanetSKI editor, James Cove, on skiing in April.

Our full and detailed snow report below, that was filed on Thursday 30th March comes from Fraser Wilkin at www.weathertoski.co.uk.

Spring snow conditions have dominated the agenda this week - though it has still been possible to find powder high up in the western Alps (e.g. Val d'Isère) following last weekend's storm.

For most, however, freeze-thaw cycles have been the order of the day, with hard early snow softening up at a rate dependent on altitude and orientation.
 
East and south-east facing slopes are the first to soften up with the early sun, followed by south- then west-facing slopes.

It has been possible to ski on cold "wintry " snow all day long, but only on high north-facing slopes - above about 2200m earlier in the week but now closer to 2600m.
 
This weekend will see the weather turn cooler with some snow in the western Alps.

In most cases this won't amount to very much but some significant falls are again possible in the high border areas between Italy and France, especially from about Val d'Isère southwards.
 
The best overall snow conditions right now are in, and will continue to be in, the higher resorts of the western Alps, such as Val d'Isère, Tignes, Les Arcs, La Plagne, Val Thorens, Cervinia, Monte Rosa, Montgenèvre.
 
By contrast, low resorts (right across the Alps) are struggling with the high temperatures and increasingly patchy snow cover.

It is still possible to find some enjoyable skiing in the likes of La Clusaz, Villars, Grindelwald, Kitzbühel and Saalbach, but the window of opportunity for good quality snow is much shorter each day than it is in the higher resorts.

flag_austria

Austria

The weather in the Austrian Alps has been spring-like for quite some time now, which means that natural snow cover is now very patchy or non-existent at low altitudes.

You can still find some enjoyable piste skiing in the likes of Kitzbühel (0/92cm) but you have to time your runs right as the snow softens up fast in the strong March sun.
 
For the most consistent snow quality, you need to head higher to the likes of Obergurgl (18/97cm) or Ischgl (0/110cm) but even here there is slush later in the day, at least lower down.
 
No significant snow is forecast over the next few days.

flag_france

France

Snow conditions are very mixed across the French Alps right now.

Snow cover is still excellent at altitude, with base depths of 30/200cm in Val Cenis and 48/205cm in Les Arcs.

Lower down, however, natural cover is patchy in the likes of Morzine (0/70cm) and Megève (0/100cm).
 
You can still find some decent piste skiing if you time your runs carefully, but the slopes are invariably slushy later in the day and there is no off-piste to speak of.
 
Some snow is expected in the French Alps this weekend, mostly above 1600-1800m.

flag_italy

Italy

The best snow cover and snow conditions are in the higher resorts of the western Italian Alps, where base depths are 0/220cm in the Monte Rosa region and 30/210cm in Cervinia.

Even here, however, the runs are turning slushy at lower altitude as the day progresses.
 
Natural snow cover is patchier lower down, especially in the Dolomites where many resorts, such as Corvara (25cm upper base) are due to close this weekend.
 
This weekend will also see snow falling in the western Italian Alps, but in what quantities remains to be seen.

flag_swiss

Switzerland

Most Swiss ski resorts remain in full spring mode, which means that the most consistent snow quality remains in the highest resorts such as Zermatt (0/180cm) and Saas-Fee (25/250cm) where there is plenty of skiing above 3000m.
 
Lower down, it is still possible to find some enjoyable piste skiing in the likes of Adelboden (0/90cm) and Villars (0/130cm), but slush is more of an issue as the day progresses.
 
Some snow is forecast for the weekend, mostly in the western Swiss Alps and probably not in any huge quantity.

Rest of Europe

Snow conditions in the Pyrenees are generally very good for late March, at least at altitude, with base depths of 110/150cm in Andorra's Pas de La Casa and 90/210cm in Spain's Baqueira Beret.
 
Most Scandinavian resorts haven't seen any significant snow in a while but there is still plenty of decent skiing around, particularly on-piste, with 50/110cm in Norway's Lillehammer and an upper base of 85cm in Finland's Levi.
 
Scottish skiing remains limited to patchy snow cover in just three resorts (Cairngorm, Glencoe and Nevis Range), none of which have upper depths of more than 20cm.

North America

flag_canada

Canada

Whistler's fabulous late season conditions continue with another 80cm clocked up over the last week.

11.2m of snow has now fallen this season at altitude, and the base is currently 3.5m deep.
 
Interior resorts are also enjoying excellent skiing, with 226cm of snow packed down on the upper pistes in the Banff area and nearly 296cm in Revelstoke.

flag_usa

USA

Snow conditions remain good across most western US resorts with fresh snow over the last few days and more in the forecast.

Colorado's Winter Park, for example, is expecting over 50cm on Friday with another significant fall due early next week.
 
In Utah, Alta (322cm upper base) is also doing well, with nearly 60cm reported in the last seven days and further snow falling at the time of writing.

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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