Sierra Snow Diary
2000-2010

Current snow diary


- 2009/2010 -
6/14/10: It's been quite warm, and this being June, that's likely to continue. There's still enough coverage for some high country touring, but with surfaces getting more and more cuppy, look for the best snow on steeper slopes, many of which should be good for a few more weeks. Enjoy your summer!

6/7/10: The melt-off is under way, but there's still great skiing on high country slopes. Tioga Pass is now open.

5/31/10: Spring conditions, good coverage; highway 108 is now open.

5/24/10: Cool quasi-wintry weather is going to persist, with some significant storm activity later in the week.

5/17/10: We're looking at a week of cool unsettled weather, though with little snow accumulation. High country snowpack remains excellent for this time of year.

5/10/10: We just got a short but fierce storm (up to a foot of fresh snow); spring conditions resume by mid-week. Coverage remains outstanding in the Sierra high country, pretty well blanketed above 10000', with plenty of snow on some slopes down to 8500'. Get out and enjoy it!

5/3/10: Looking like at least a week of fair weather (and cool nights). Should be excellent in the high country!

4/26/10: Ditto of last Monday's report: Yet more snowfall this week, probably a foot or so, with spring conditions by weekend.

4/19/10: We have yet another storm system arriving soon, dropping another foot or more of fresh snow. Springtime conditions resume by the weekend.

4/12/10: Another wintry interlude is upon us, with a foot or more of fresh snow having just arrived, and cool unsettled conditions through the weekend.

4/5/10: We ended up with as much as 5 feet of fresh in about the past week, somewhat less towards the south. Springtime conditions return this week.

3/29/10: Surprise: This will be a week of winter-like conditions, with 2 feet of fresh snow, perhaps more from Tahoe northward.

3/22/10: More sunshine (but not too warm); we may get some minor precip towards the end of the week.

3/15/10: We have a week of sunny weather ahead.

3/8/10: Unsettled weather continues; expect some snowfall by the weekend.

3/1/10: Plenty of fresh snow from the past week; another foot or two coming up this week too.

2/22/10: It's been nothing but clear weather and mild storms for a while (just a few inches fell this past weekend). That's supposed to change, with significant snowfall in the coming week and into the weekend.

2/15/10: We're in the middle of a week-plus window of clear warm weather. Snowfall returns to the Sierra by next weekend.

2/8/10: Looks like more of the same for the coming week: unsettled weather with significant but not major snow accumulation.

2/1/10: More storms coming our way, increasingly heavy towards the end of the week and through the weekend.

1/25/10: The past week of storms will wind down by tomorrow night. It wasn't quite the natural disaster that some people thought it would be, but it still delivered 5-6 feet (so far, with another foot or two still to come), pretty well turning the season around for us.

1/18/10: Huge storms all week!

1/11/10: We have a pretty good storm coming in the next few days, possibly a bit more arriving on the weekend.

1/4/10: The Sierra snowpack is OK, but we could use more snow. However, no significant new snow is predicted through next weekend.

12/28/09: A decent storm should be coming early this week.

12/21/09: There's been only a little snow since a week ago, and only a little more is predicted for this next week.

12/14/09: Three feet of fresh snow just landed, so we now have an OK base. More unsettled conditions this week, including a chance of another foot or two in the Tahoe area (but probably not to the south).

12/7/09: Still very little coverage. There were predictions for a huge storm this week, but that seems to have fizzled after a dry couple of feet. There may be a huge storm by the weekend though.

11/30/09: Almost no snowcover, no new snow in the forecast.

11/23/09: We're going into Thanksgiving with just a few inches of snow on the ground, and nothing to speak of expected in the next week. It should be noted though that there was briefly some skiable snow in the Sierra back in October.


- 2008/2009 -
5/11/09: It's about to heat up again. Get out into the high country soon, because a below-average season is going to dry up soon. I'll be back with the weekly reports around November.

5/4/09: The storm should clear soon, leaving up to 2 feet of fresh snow in the high country.

4/27/09: Cool and unsettled weather this week, leading to more storm activity by the weekend.

4/20/09: The melt-off will be interrupted later in the week with a significant wintry storm; we could see at least a foot of fresh in the high country.

4/13/09: Cool and windy, with just a little snow, early this week, then warming again.

4/6/09: A springtime storm will hit the Sierra mid-week, should be significant but not major accumulation, mostly in the high country.

3/30/09: More mostly clear weather ahead; I'd say it's about time to get into the Sierra high country before the corn melts off.

3/23/09: We got up to 2 feet of fresh snow this past weekend, and now the sunshine returns for a while.

3/16/09: We're seeing some unsettled skies, but no major precip is expected for the next week. The backcountry is in nice shape, with very good (but still below average) snowpack.

3/9/09: More than 5 feet of snow fell last week; this week will be clear.

3/2/09: Major snow accumulation continues this week.

2/23/09: Fresh snow continues to accumulate. We're starting to see a lull, but significant snowfall continues later this week.

2/16/09: It's been a great week of storms, giving us more than 5 feet of fresh snow. After a break, it'll probably be more storms for the coming weekend.

2/9/09: It's still a thin snowpack, but now we have a fresh foot of snow from the weekend, and plenty more to come this week.

2/2/09: The not particularly robust snowpack will get some help later this week, with 1 to 3 feet of fresh (larger amounts around Mammoth, lesser amounts to the north) by the weekend.

1/26/09: The storms of the past few days added up to 2 feet of snow to the still thin base; Sunny and cold for the next week.

1/19/09: This painful dry spell will be broken later in the week with some rather lightweight stormage, probably less than a foot total through next weekend.

1/12/09: We need more snow, but that's not happening anytime soon.

1/5/09: The base, adequate for now, got refreshed last Friday with 6 inches or so new snow. It's going to be mostly dry for the next week.

12/29/08: We got excellent stormage, well over 4 feet, in the past week. Snow showers but no major accumulation for the next week.

12/22/08: The storm season has arrived; cold snow all this week and into the weekend.

12/15/08: A nice cold storm is blowing through; we'll be looking at up to 3 feet of fresh by mid-week, a good start.

12/8/08: Still no snowpack to speak of; we'll have some snow showers by the weekend.

12/1/08: It's become the norm in recent years for the Sierra snowpack to not amount to much until mid-December or so. There have been some flurries in the past week, but aside from a resort or two operating on man-made snow, nothing's happening yet, nor through the weekend.


- 2007/2008 -
5/26/08: A surprisingly big storm brought nearly a foot of snow to parts of the Sierra high country this past weekend. Warm conditions will return later in the week. Still, the best coverage is limited to gullies and high northeast slopes. Have fun and see you next season!

5/19/08: Hot weather earlier this past week melted out a lot of ground, but there's still good skiing on classic high country descent lines. Sonora Pass has been open for over a week, and Tioga is likely to open by the weekend (unless delayed by the minor storm that is expected over the holiday weekend).

5/12/08: Coverage is starting to dwindle for even high country general touring, but remains quite good for peak'n'gulley skiing. Unfortunately, a heat wave starting later this week will do some damage.

5/5/08: There is great coverage and conditions in the high country. This week, we're looking at cool weather with some springtime storm activity.

4/28/08: Springtime sunshine continues, though with high winds early this coming week and some mildly unsettled weather approaching the weekend.

4/21/08: It's been cold and windy, and we can expect some actual snowfall by mid-week. But at least it isn't hot. Good corn snow should be back by the weekend.

4/14/08: Snowpack conditions may be a little funky, with cool winds following a brief heat wave, but nice springtime corn should be back by mid-week.

4/7/08: Yet more cool sunny weather, broken up occasionally by mild unsettled conditions. This has been going on for about a month now, and it adds up to some of the best spring ski conditions in years.

3/31/08: More mostly sunny days and cool nights. Should be ideal spring conditions between and after the few bits of mild storm activity that are coming up.

3/24/08: The corn harvest continues! There may be a little fresh snow later this week.

3/17/08: Great spring skiing resumes.

3/10/08: It looks like all this corn snow is going to get some fresh stuff on top of it, probably most of a foot, later in the week.

3/3/08: Clear and cool continues.

2/25/08: The past few days brought another ~4 feet of snow to the already robust Sierra snowpack. Now, clear and cool for the coming week or so.

2/18/08: Increasing storminess, with a foot or so of accumulation likely by late in the week.

2/11/08: Plenty of snow, more clear weather.

2/4/08: Two weeks with significant snowfall every single day has come to an end. It added up to about 9 feet of fresh, give or take. Coverage is great, even at relatively lower elevations. For now, it's time for some clear weather.

1/28/08: Quite a lot of snow has fallen in the last few days, and lots more is coming.

1/21/08: There's good but not robust snow coverage. Fortunately, we'll probably get up to two feet by mid-week to refresh things.

1/14/08: It's a good snopack, thanks to the storms a week ago. Sunny and cool for the next week or so.

1/7/08: A decent snowpack is finally here! 4 feet of fresh this past week, with more on the way.

12/31/07: Stormy weather in the past few days yielded only about a half-foot of snow, so the snowpack is still kind of thin. That should change this coming weekend though; it looks like we have an epic storm on the way.

12/24/07: We got a decent storm in the past week, 2-3 feet of fresh. There's now at least sufficient coverage for resort skiing and some moderate terrain backcountry touring, but more is needed. There will be some more snow towards next weenend.

12/17/07: It's looking like this week will bring us the first big storm of the season, with possibly 4 feet of new snow by next weekend.

12/10/07: We got up to about 2 feet a few days ago. That's a start, but only a start; good enough to call a "base" if we get some decent snowpack on top of that soon. Nothing this week though, maybe next week.

12/3/07: Still bare; a bit of unsettled weather later in the week may bring up to a foot of snow if we're lucky.

11/26/07: Still no snow, though a couple of downhill resorts are now operating on limited man-made coverage.

11/19/07: Another ski season should arrive one of these weeks. For now, heading into Thanksgiving and probably through the end of the month, the Sierra is bone dry (aside from today's dusting in the Tahoe area).


- 2006/2007 -
5/7/07: After a bit of new snow, we have warm weather again. Sonora and Tioga Passes should be open very soon, which is where some of the last remaining snow is; a below-average snow season is already drawing to a close. Enjoy your summer!

4/30/07: Some unsettled weather this coming week, clearing for the weekend.

4/23/07: There was a powder day to be had this past weekend, but it's springtime once again this coming week. The fresh snow is too late to help the remaining snowpack much.

4/16/07: It's been kind of wintry lately, and there's a good chance of a foot or two of snow coming later this week. The trick is finding places where there's still a base for the fresh stuff to land on; many East Side backcountry spots are already dry or getting thin.

4/9/07: Cool and unsettled weather this week, but not much new snow is expected to add to the below-average snowpack.

4/2/07: Spring conditions. The Sierra snowpack is already at what would be typical levels for May or June. If you want to ski peaks (from Mammoth northward only), do it soon; already getting too late for most general backcountry ski touring.

3/26/07: We'll get up to a foot of fresh snow tonight, then springtime weather returns.

3/19/07: Springtime weather continues, though with some light showers early in the week.

3/12/07: Sunny and warm for the next week or so. Consider planning those high country trips early this year, because the snowpack won't hold up long at this rate.

3/5/07: Finally, we got a good storm; up to 6 feet in the past week and a half, and the snowpack has gone from bad to decent. Unfortunately, that may be it; springtime conditions are now here, and it's expected to stay warm for the next week or so.

2/26/07: OK, now we're talking. Lots of fresh snow, and more coming in the next few days! Enjoy, and watch out for the high avy conditions.

2/19/07: We have some more stormage coming in later this week. It's definitely needed.

2/12/07: Finally, this past few days has delivered up to 3 feet of wet snow above 7000'. More is needed, and more may come; unsettled weather forecast for the next week or two.

2/5/07: Five weeks of dry weather is about to be broken later this week, with what could be the season's first major storm.

1/29/07: Dry weather continues, though with a small storm early in the week that may drop up to 6 inches or so from Mammoth southward. The backcountry snowpack is not in good shape.

1/22/07: Poor snowpack; another mostly dry week coming up.

1/15/07: No new snow, and nothing except a possible dusting in the next week or so either. The thin base will at least be well preserved, since it's going to stay cold. Expect poor surface quality: crust and ice. Your best bet is probably to go skating at an XC resort.

1/8/07: We got most of a foot of fresh very dry snow last week. Overall, the snowpack is adequate for plenty of tours, but not ample; we have yet to see our first four-foot-dump of the season. A minor storm will blow through in a few days, but otherwise nothing new for the next week or so.

1/1/07: The snowpack is starting to shape up, with some snow last week, and a significant storm later this coming week. Not great coverage everywhere, so go high for the best snow.

12/25/06: We got about a foot of fresh last week, and may get up to another two feet this coming week. Still not a robust base, but it's a start.

12/18/06: Some moderate storm activity has added some to the shallow base, but backcountry is still going to be thin in most areas. Unsettled weather continues later this week.

12/11/06: Up to a foot of fresh snow brings us up to... a foot or so total, still a very thin snowpack. Unsettled weather this week will add a bit more.

12/4/06: Clear weather and thin (to no) snow coverage continues. This coming weekend should bring some snow, but it doesn't look like a big storm.

11/27/06: There's been some fresh snow, a foot or so (total down to the ground), more in the Tahoe area than farther south. It will clear up by tomorrow though, staying clear through next weekend. Nothing much happening yet except resorts that have snowmaking.

11/20/06: Another season with a (so far) underwhelming start. There's some snow from the past week or so, but very little. A few resorts are opening with man-made snow coverage though.


- 2005/2006 -
6/12/06: Spring conditions with some thunderstorms early in the week. There are still a few weeks left to grab some peaks'n'gullies fun in the high country, but high quality skiing is getting more scarce. Enjoy your summer!

6/5/06: There is still lots of snow in the high country, but it's getting cuppy and soft below 10500', and on lower angle terrain. Still lots of fun to be had on high peaks and gullies.

5/29/06: Springtime conditions are here, and high country peaks'n'gullies skiing should be outstanding for the next week or two.

5/22/06: A storm system is rolling through, which could drop a foot or more of fresh snow in the high country. Warm weather resumes mid-week.

5/15/06: More very warm weather coming (though with some afternoon precip). Slushy slop is the norm below 10000'; ski early in the day and go as high as you can.

5/8/06: Sunshine continues. The Sierra high country is blanketed, but much of the snow below 11000' is of rotten slop quality. Go high and go early in the day.

5/1/06: It's sunny and warm in the backcountry. Nice skiing in the Sierra high country, though with some wet slop conditions lower down and in the afternoon, with some wet slides to watch out for.

4/24/06: The big storms are over, with lingering showers on-and-off for much of the next week. The Sierra snowpack is plentiful, but wet slop below about 9000'.

4/17/06: Some unsettled conditions through this coming weekend, but it does look like we're about to get a window of warm spring weather soon.

4/10/06: No, it isn't spring yet; yet another week of snow showers coming up.

4/3/06: The stormage continues, with a few more feet of snow coming in the next week.

3/27/06: This unusually stormy month of March isn't over yet; another foot or two of wet snow is supposed to fall this coming week.

3/20/06: It's been powder time since the start of the month; more snow falling early this week.

3/13/06: Snow's been falling throughout the Sierra for well over a week now, and there's more snow ahead. Enjoy!

3/6/06: About four feet of fresh snow in the past few days, and more coming this week!

2/27/06: Get those powder skis ready because this week is going to be big!

2/20/06: We got a foot or two of fresh snow this past weekend. This coming week is dry, with chance of more storms after next weekend.

2/13/06: It's hardpack out there, with no new snow until later this week.

2/6/06: After a minor storm this past weekend, it's about to turn dry and fairly warm for the next week or so.

1/30/06: We got up to a foot of fresh snow this past weekend, and there's more coming this week.

1/23/06: Cold weather has preserved last week's powder nicely. It'll warm up a little this week, with some more stormage possible by the weekend.

1/16/06: We got a couple feet of snow this past weekend, with more coming this week.

1/9/06: Another wet storm rolls in this week, adding to the higher elevation snowpack.

1/2/06: A very wet storm cycle is ending with some great snow accumulation, adding 3 to 5 feet in most areas, and undoubtably significantly more in the high backcountry. Weather will settle down later this week, though we can still use more snow, particularly below 7000'.

12/26/05: Warm stormage continues. Higher elevation areas of ski resorts are getting moderate amounts of fresh snow, but the backcountry remains pretty thin except for isolated high spots. At least the high country to the south is developing a good base. Hopefully this week's big storm will be somewhat colder.

12/19/05: A pretty good (though warm) storm dropped 1 to 2 feet, with the higher amounts at higher elevations. Unsettled (but still warm) weather this week should add some more snow above 8000'. Go high if you want decent skiing.

12/12/05: The thin snowpack gets no significant help in the coming week, which will be mostly sunny.

12/5/05: Last week brought about 3 feet at around or above 8000', much less lower down. So there's finally something to ski on, but more is needed. Not much coming this week.

11/28/05: Snow finally arrives this week, mostly in the northern Sierra, and as it's on the warm side, mostly at higher elevations.

11/21/05: It's still mountain-biking season in the Tahoe area. There've been reports of decent skiing on Shasta, and Mammoth's open on mostly man-made snow, but mostly the snow hasn't arrived yet.


- 2004/2005 -
6/13/05: It's warm again. There is still lots of snow in the high country (which should last into early July), but at this point snow quality is best for steep descents. Lower angle snow is getting cuppy. What a season! My weekly summary will return in November.

6/6/05: A week or so of cooler weather is helping to stabilize the sloppy snowpack. East-side access to the Tioga Pass area just opened (not open all the way through the park). Should be great snow for most high-elevation backcountry descents; kind of late for most tours though. Some unsettled weather may be coming later this week.

5/30/05: Still excellent coverage for skiing high-elevation lines, though as we get into June, the best snow quality will increasingly be on just the steeper slopes. Sonora Pass is now open.

5/23/05: Still lots of coverage, but the melt-out is under way. Backcountry skiing will improve if and when it cools off some; in the meantime, wake up early for whatever you want to ski.

5/16/05: Warm nights have arrived, slushing out the snowpack even at high elevations.

5/9/05: Some fresh snow from late last week, and more snow expected early this week.

5/2/05: The unsettled weather pattern continues, with storm activity expected in the high country at various times for the next week and a half, at least. Still, there's good spring skiing to be had, particularly on south-facing slopes between 9000' and 11000'.

4/25/05: Unsettled mountain weather continues on-and-off through next weekend. Don't expect more than a little new snow, but the backcountry won't be all sunshine and corn snow either.

4/18/05: Plenty of coverage and spring conditions, but there is a growing possibility of storms during or just after the coming weekend.

4/11/05: We just got up to a foot of new snow in the Tahoe area, less further south. Returning this week to spring conditions.

4/4/05: This past weekend's storm was harsh but brief, giving us several inches of fresh snow. Conditions remain somewhat unsettled for the coming week, but major precip is not expected.

3/28/05: Sunshine returns soon, and will be softening the 4 to 6 feet of new snow from the past week.

3/21/05: A foot of fresh snow just fell this past weekend, and it's a stormy week coming up.

3/14/05: Still sunny but cooler this week, with storm possibilities by the weekend.

3/7/05: Springtime weather is here for the next week or so.

2/28/05: The current storm cycle is bringing up to a foot of fresh snow. Skies will dry up, and warm up, by the weekend.

2/21/05: Outstanding coverage continues with fresh snow from the past weekend. Mostly dry this week.

2/14/05: Unsettled weather is back. This week should bring at least a foot of fresh snow, maybe more.

2/7/05: With the past week of cold clear weather, backcountry snow is now mostly crust, though you may find some "spring" snow if you hit sun-warmed slopes at the right time of day. We may get our next significant precip sometime after next weekend.

1/31/05: Up to 2 feet of fresh snow last week made for great skiing this past weekend on the Sierra's robust snowpack. It will be sunny for the next week or so.

1/24/05: Great base, but crusty. Looks like we'll get some fresh snow this week.

1/17/05: The powder party is over; there's still lots of snow everywhere, but we're looking at warm weather for a week or so.

1/10/05: The Sierra snowpack is in awesome shape after this second huge storm in two weeks. Cool weather this coming week should keep the backcountry snow nice and fresh.

1/3/05: More stormage in the coming week, following the past week of heavy snowfall.

12/27/04: The storm door is... open! There should be plenty of new snow in the coming week.

12/20/04: We skated this past weekend, which at this point is probably the best skiing available. Backcountry coverage is suffering, and there is no new snow expected for at least another week.

12/13/04: A few feet of fresh snow last week definitely helped coverage, but warm conditions are affecting quality. No significant precip in the coming week.

12/6/04: The snowpack is still kind of marginal, but a substantial storm early this week should help.

11/29/04: The thin to non-existant snowpack got more than a foot of fresh this past weekend. We may get a bit more later this week.

11/22/04: A stretch of mostly dry weather is eating away at the early snowpack, though there's still some coverage up high, particularly at resorts and on north-facing slopes.

11/15/04: Mostly fair weather ahead.

11/8/04: It was kind of spring-like this past weekend. Coverage remains decent, but warm temps are taking a toll. Unsettled weather through next weekend.

11/1/04: In the aftermath of the biggest October snowfall since 1945, there is very good coverage, but it's already hardpack (at resorts) and crust (backcountry). Dry weather for the next week or so.

10/25/04: How 'bout that October snowpack! Last week brought 2 to 4 feet of heavy base layer throughout the range, with a foot or so more coming this week. There is already very good backcountry skiing in some areas.


- 2003/2004 -
5/17/04: The season is winding down, though you'll still find good ski runs on the usual late-spring high bowls. I'll be back next season.

5/10/04: The spring melt-off continues; still good skiing on high country peaks and gullies.

5/3/04: There's still great corn snow if you go high for it. Sonora Pass is supposed to open this coming weekend, and Tioga the weekend after that.

4/26/04: Great spring skiing in the high country.

4/19/04: Cool/stormy conditions for the past few days are helping to preserve the snowpack up high, while adding a little fresh snow. Back to springtime conditions later this week.

4/12/04: Great spring skiing in the high country; some unsettled conditions later this week.

4/5/04: We have springtime conditions, with good skiing around and above 9000'.

3/29/04: Cooler weather and most of a foot of fresh snow last week are a welcome change from the heat earlier in March. Snow line is rather high now, with lots of dry ground below 8000'. Warming into next weekend.

3/22/04: These past several weeks of dry and sometimes very hot weather have melted a lot of snow below 8000', but this season's robust snowpack is still generally intact. It's getting cooler and windier now, and we'll probably have at least a little snow by the end of the week.

3/15/04: We have yet another warm dry week.

3/8/04: Another sunny week ahead.

3/1/04: The storm cycle is winding down, leaving the Sierra snowpack in great shape. There's a warming trend going into next weekend.

2/23/04: There is plenty of fresh snow, and lots more coming!

2/16/04: The storm door is open! Lots of snow all over the range through this week and beyond.

2/9/04: We got some fresh snow during the past week, but it's looking mostly dry through next weekend.

2/2/04: Finally, another real storm! After up to a foot of fresh (mostly in the northern half of the range) last week, we're getting a few more feet right around now.

1/26/04: A few inches of fresh snow this past weekend improved the 3-week crust a little. Unsettled conditions this coming week will add some more snow, perhaps up to a foot through the end of the week.

1/19/04: We're looking at yet another week of dry weather and crusty snow. The situation could change by the end of the month though.

1/12/04: Another mostly dry and warm week ahead.

1/5/04: A week or so of very heavy snow, throughout the range, has just ended. Mostly dry and warmer next week.

12/29/03: I'm posting this report from Tioga Pass Resort, where we're anticipating a huge storm in the next day or two, with more snow a few days after that.

12/22/03: The Sierra snowpack is in great shape, with a little new snow this past weekend, and much more coming in the next week.

12/15/03: Ladies & gentlemen, we have a snowpack, with 2 to 4 feet of new snow between Wednesday and Sunday morning (though the weekend storm only hit Tahoe northward, the whole range got some earlier in the week).

12/8/03: This past weekend brought much needed snow, up to 2 feet more, though only above 7000'. Probably more snow coming mid-week.

12/1/03: Unsettled weather through next weekend is good news for the thin snowpack.

11/24/03: The snow is quite thin, but there is some fun to be had at some resorts; also touring is OK in a few spots. We need a good storm, but it isn't happening within the next week.

11/17/03: A bit more snow this weekend, and there will be more still a week from now; still quite thin of course, but it will be a great base for whenever we get the first truly big storm.

11/10/03: More than a foot of fresh snow this past weekend, on top of the previous weekend's half-foot.

11/3/03: First snows hit the Sierra this past weekend, 1/2-foot or so in some areas. More of this in the forecast through next weekend.


- 2002/2003 -
6/2/03: Warm temps have been rapidly melting off the snowpack. Still some good peaks & gullies skiing higher up though. Tioga Road is now open.

5/26/03: Sunny and warm. Sonora Pass just opened.

5/19/03: Sunshine all over. Plenty of great corn snow at the higher elevations (deep slush lower down). Enjoy!

5/12/03: Springtime is here! Last month's storms brought much of the range, particularly the northern half, from below-average to above-average. The southern Sierra is still below average, however.

5/5/03: Heavy snowfall throughout the range this past weekend caps off a month of generally stormy weather. This week, spring returns, though there is a chance of more stormage late in the week.

4/28/03: A stormy April finishes with more storms and unsettled weather through yet another week.

4/21/03: A sort of wintry April continues, with more cool and unsettled weather for most of the next week.

4/14/03: Another big storm is winding down, adding 2 feet or so in the northern to central Sierra. More snow coming in the next few days, perhaps this next bit getting the southern Sierra as well.

4/7/03: A cold storm just dropped 2 to 3 feet in the northern to central Sierra, giving us some of the best powder skiing of the season. If you missed it, you may get another chance with next weekend's storm.

3/31/03: Spring weather is here, but it looks like that will be interrupted by a storm cycle later this week.

3/24/03: More warm storm activity added some texture around Tahoe and maintained the snowpack elsewhere in the range.

3/17/03: A warm storm added up to a foot or so of fresh snow throughout the Sierra range. Some unsettled conditions later in the week may add more.

3/10/03: Recent warm conditions have taken their toll, especially at Tahoe-level elevations. But a good storm is supposed to roll in by the weekend.

3/3/03: Up to a foot of fresh snow this past weekend, with some unsettled weather ahead.

2/24/03: In the past week or two, the southern high Sierra has nearly doubled its snowpack (the Tahoe area got some too, but not as much). That's gradually clearing now.

2/17/03: Finally, more snow. There's up to 2 feet of fresh, throughout the range, with the southern Sierra getting more than its share for once. We'll get a little more fresh stuff later this week.

2/10/03: It's been more than a month since any substantial precip, so the crusty snowpack, with poor coverage on south-facing aspects, is no surprise. Some unsettled conditions in the coming week, but so far it doesn't look like much.

2/3/03: The northern Sierra got 2 to 6 inches of fresh snow in the past few days, but it's been a while now since anything substantial. Looks dry for the next week.

1/27/03: At Tahoe elevations, it's been raining on the snowpack and only barely freezing at night, making backcountry snow rather funky in most places. More warm conditions, including more rain, in the week ahead.

1/20/03: Some unsettled weather this week may freshen up the top of the snowpack a bit, but nothing major. We're looking at another dry weekend.

1/13/03: Plenty of coverage including a foot of relatively fresh, but things are clearing now for our first dry spell in weeks.

1/6/03: Great snow coverage everywhere, but we've got clear and warm weather for a few days (meaning, watch for icy crust afterwards). Possibility of some precip on the weekend.

12/30/02: Lots of snow, with more coming tomorrow.

12/23/02: We just had an outstanding week of cold and plentiful powder snow, all over the range. Now we have a bit of a break, but more unsettled weather is ahead.

12/16/02: The storm door has finally opened, though some lower and southern locations are still waiting to get their share. Unsettled weather at least through the coming weekend.

12/9/02: Some new snowfall recently, but not enough to expand coverage beyond high north-facing slopes. Maybe the coming weekend will bring a better storm.

12/2/02: There was just adequate snow at Sugar Bowl and Royal Gorge, but the backcountry isn't happening until we get significantly more snow.

11/25/02: We skied Castle Peak yesterday, where there was spring-like snow (though thin) on south-facing bowls. Don't count on that lasting too much longer though; it's supposed to stay sunny for at least another week.

11/18/02: Nothing but dry weather for the past week, and the coming week.

11/11/02: Another season begins, with a blanketing of snow, 1 to 3 feet, throughout the Sierra range (above 7000' or so anyway). A couple of resorts are now open, we'll see more open resorts and the start of some OK backcountry after the next big storm. Some precip possible next weekend.


- 2001/2002 -
5/27/02: I'm getting reports of outstanding corn snow on north- and east-facing gullies in the greater Yosemite crest areas. That said, you're running out of time, as coverage is dwindling and this coming week brings a heat wave. I'll resume reports next season!

5/20/02: We had some great corn snow until it started snowing Sunday. Now it's up to a foot of fresh stuff, on top of a variable snowpack. I guess the powder skiing will be good right after the storm, and we'll have funky transition snow for about a week after that.

5/13/02: There's great corn snow if you go to the right places, such as the crest from Sonora to Tioga Passes, so get out there! It's too late for most point-to-point tours though.

5/6/02: Spring conditions have returned, though too late for many areas, such as most of the Sierra south of Mammoth. Where there is still good coverage, the spring skiing is excellent.

4/29/02: It's been tough to find good spring snow lately. Where there's still good coverage, we've seen cold and windy conditions, making for crusty snow in a lot of places. More of these mixed conditions in the coming week, though somewhat warmer temps may improve snow quality.

4/22/02: Cooler weather (and a storm) last week stalled the spring melt-off, but warmer weather returns this coming week. If you want to get out skiing in the Sierra high country (ideally not south of Mammoth), get out there within the next few weeks.

4/15/02: Warm weather continues to melt off the snowpack. Your best bet is to stay in the Mammoth-Tioga-Sawtooth-Sonora zones, as the southern crest is getting pretty dry.

4/8/02: The heat wave is over for now, with typical temps and some minor storm activity in the coming week. The southern Sierra, particularly around and east of the crest, is drying up fast, but there is still good spring snow from Mammoth northwards.

4/1/02: Spring has arrived with a vengeance. Hot weather will continue the start of the melt-off until around next weekend when it cools off some.

3/25/02: Yet another huge powder dump this past weekend, covering the entire range with up to 4 feet of fresh. Sunny and warm is coming soon though, so get ready for spring!

3/18/02: It was nice dry pow this past weekend, but the sun's out now, and it will warm up some this week; a chance of snow next weekend.

3/11/02: Wintertime conditions have returned to the entire Sierra range, with several feet of fresh cement snow on top of the ample base, and more unsettled weather coming in the next week.

3/4/02: We just had a warm week, but winter returns tomorrow, with several days of snowfall throughout the range.

2/25/02: It was pretty crusty around Tahoe this past weekend, but warmer temps this coming week should bring a taste of Spring conditions to the area.

2/18/02: A storm just gave us about a foot or so throughout the Sierra range, looks like more snow in the next few days. It's a fine snowpack nearly everywhere.

2/11/02: Warmer temps in the past few days have crusted the snow surface some. There may be a good storm next weekend.

2/4/02: It's been a week since the last real storm, but cold temps have preserved things well and there are still powder stashes to be found. Doesn't look like any major storm activity for the next week.

1/28/02: We got a major storm this past weekend, which hit the Tahoe area more than the rest of the range, but overall 1 to 3 feet of new snow.

1/21/02: Three minor storms in the past five days have combined to give us about 1/2 foot of new snow, which has improved the skiing quality immensely. Continued unsettled conditions should keep things pretty good through next weekend.

1/14/02: There's been no significant snowfall for about 3 weeks now. Still plenty of snowcover, but quality is poor; crust and ice are everywhere. It will be at least another week before the next real storm.

1/7/02: Nothing new this week. Still warm and moist, but not warm and moist enough to diminish the snowpack.

12/31/01: It's heavy glop out there, thanks to rain and above-freezing nighttime temps (the high country got a boost though). Overall, still a nice solid base, but with a slushy surface.

12/24/01: Plenty of coverage, but only a little snow in next week's forecast. Hopefully we'll get a few inches here and there to keep the crust away!

12/17/01: An outstanding snowpack for this early in the season. Some more fresh snow coming in the next few days.

12/10/01: There is now a solid base, up to 4 feet of settled snow. A little new snow late in the week should make for nice non-crusty conditions next weekend.

12/3/01: It's been snowing all week, and the snowfall will continue on and off through next weekend. A solid base in early December, think of that!

11/26/01: We have up to 2 feet of snow at higher elevations throughout the Sierra, and it looks like a few more feet will fall during this coming week.

11/19/01: Only about 1/2 foot of snow so far at the passes. This coming week brings storms, but with a pretty high snow level, hopefully cooling off towards the weekend.

11/12/01: Our first storm of the season is here! On the warm side, but it'll cool down to give this winter's base a 1 to 2 foot start.


- 2000/2001 -
5/21/01: The couloir skiing is still good in places, but everything else is pretty spotty. See you next season!

5/14/01: Warm days and nights continue; snow is very slushy and getting cuppy as well. The Sierra backcountry ski season is pretty much over, except for high north- and east-facing peaks and gullies; if you have some favorite high spring slopes, they may be OK for a couple more weeks.

5/7/01: Still clear and very warm. Many high country locations have already lost most of their snow, so it's getting late for crest tours. High north- and east-facing slopes should still be excellent though. Highways 4 and 108 are now open, and you can drive 120 eastside up to around 9000'.

4/30/01: Warm conditions continue. Still decent coverage on the southern crest above 10000', probably more like 9000' north of Mammoth. If you want to do a crest tour, get out now while you can. A possible heat wave a week from now could end the backcountry ski season in most places.

4/23/01: Up to 2 feet of cement snow fell a few days ago, but the weather is heating up again this week. Maybe just a little unsettled weather coming next weekend.

4/16/01: The springtime corn returned, but perhaps only briefly; stormy weather is supposed to return later this week.

4/9/01: We just had a great powder weekend, 2 feet of fresh snow throughout much of the Sierra. Springtime is on its way back, though I'd wait a bit for the slopes to stabilize.

4/2/01: Cooler temps, high winds, and ongoing unsettled conditions are conspiring to give us springtime crust (and there will be fresh powder in places), but the corn snow should be back later in the month. We had generally good coverage on the southern crest above 9000'.

3/26/01: The past two weeks of warm days and not-so-cold nights have taken their toll on the Sierra snowpack, particularly below 8000'. Many slopes are losing coverage. This spring season could be sweet but short, so if you want to ski the corn, you may want to jump on it soon.

3/19/01: It's warm up here in the Sierra, corning up at higher elevations, and slushing out below around 9000'.

3/12/01: We are in a transition to springtime conditions. Plenty of snow coverage, but still more crust than corn on the surface.

3/5/01: The big cement mixer made a delivery this past few days; up to 4 feet of very dense new snow throughout the Sierra range. With some settling this week, next weekend could be yet another fine one to be out skiing.

2/26/01: What a difference a few weeks makes! The Sierra snowpack is now ample in most places (we could still use some more along the high crest from Rock Creek through Whitney). Drier weather this week will help it all settle. Get out there and ski!

2/19/01: Finally some steady snow accumulation. We have a couple of feet of classic fresh Sierra Cement already this past weekend, with plenty more on the way during the next week and through next weekend.

2/12/01: Three incredible days at the Bear Valley Tele Festival, and the heavy snowfall just about never quit. Yesterday was unreal, people hooting and yelping for joy, plunging through puffs of luscious snow, getting face-shots in the dry powder without even trying. 7 to 10 feet of new snow all over the Sierra!

2/5/01: Just a little new snow here and there, not much. There's adequate coverage for many tours, particularly along the crest from Tahoe down to Sonora Pass, and a lot of westside tours in the central and southern Sierra. Still rather thin overall, particularly in the high country.

1/29/01: A foot or so of new snow fell throughout the range last week, improving the still unimpressive backcountry coverage.

1/22/01: With no significant new snow in the past week, coverage remains a mixed bag: Fine for many intermediate tours and let's-find-a-good-tele-slope outings, but marginal for most advanced backcountry. Some snow coming this week, probably not a major storm.

1/15/01: Last week's storm gave us about 2 feet throughout the range, improving the thin base around Tahoe and giving the base a new start southward. There is now good coverage for intermediate tours in greater Tahoe and easy tours elsewhere. More snow needed.

1/8/01: This coming week's snow breaks a painful dry spell, but it looks like the season's first major storm still awaits.

1/1/01: Ditto of last week's bleak report. We drove up the East Side today returning from the desert; I've seen more snow on Mt. Tom in August.

12/25/00: Nothing new, still thin. You'll find adequate (though crusty) snow on some high Tahoe-area routes, but not much elsewhere. The best skiing this week will be the nice fast XC-skating conditions at Tahoe-area XC resorts.

12/18/00: The northern Sierra got two feet of badly needed new snow last week, so coverage is now pretty adequate high up except on south-facing slopes. More snow needed, especially everywhere south of Tahoe.

12/11/00: This coming week will bring some badly needed new snow to the thin & patchy snowpack. Not quite the major storm that we really need, but it should be a foot or so; we'll take it.

12/4/00: A little new snow fell in the Sierra last week but it's still very thin. You can play connect-the-patches, and maybe even find some stashes of windblown powder. Better yet, go on a desert trip.

11/27/00: Nothing much new in the Sierra snowpack lately, but at least what's there isn't melting off. Possibility of good stormage later in the week, but for now it's still thin.

11/20/00: We had a nice day Saturday at Royal Gorge, but overall, the recent warm days are bad news for the thin Sierra snowpack. For now, stick to resorts with good snowmaking.

11/13/00: Higher locations in the Sierra now have about a foot of crusty base with a little under a foot of fresh dry powder on top of that. Definitely good enough for some backcountry trails like Castle Peak, but still pretty thin for most everything else.

11/6/00: More snow coming.

10/30/00: Welcome back! There's about a foot of new snow in the Sierra, helpful as a base if we get another storm soon. And maybe just enough for some novelty-skiing, with rock-skis & kneepads, on certain particularly smooth backcountry trails & slopes. Ebbetts, Sonora, and Tioga Passes are closed. Oh, and Boreal just opened.


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