By Pete ‘The Frog’ Taylor – snowatch.com.au
With only a week and a half until the official opening of Season 2017 it’s time to take a look at what we currently have and what’s in store for the early part of the season.
We have just had a decent fall of snow in the mountains followed by cool temps that have allowed the snowmakers to pump out snow for long periods over the last couple of nights. The images posted across social media and the morning shots on the resort cams have really caused the snow buzz to intensify. Judging by news reports one might think that we are in for a big season and there is plenty of snow, especially with Perisher set to open a week early this Saturday.
So are we in for a great start to the season or has this recent snow just papered over the cracks? It’s a bit of both really. Whilst everything looks rosy at the moment the cover is still quite thin (once compacted), and it’s only really the areas that have snowmaking that will last the next week. Already the area’s without snowmaking are patchy in most resorts. On the upside, once this current snow system clears we will see a large high pressure system move over the mountains and give us clear days and very cold nights. This should allow the snow guns to be able to operate from sundown to after sunrise from the 1st to 5th or 6th of June. This should enable most if not all resorts to get some lifts spinning for the ‘official’ opening on Saturday week.
We have an interesting low arriving around the 6th that looks like dropping some snow across the 6th-8th. If this one comes off we should have a decent enough cover for quite a few lifts to run across the resorts . Keep an eye on the daily Snowatch updates as we get closer.
Looking long range the 15th could see more snow falling. If this happens then the start of the season will be well above average for mid June. We do need to get as much snow early as possible as the long term outlook for the later part of winter is for above average temps both day and night and also drier conditions than normal as we possibly head towards as El Nino scenario.
Fingers crossed for the 9th-12th building into something big after the initial rain.