Wow! What an incredible week of weather and what a difference a week makes in the mountains! A wild, wet and windy front crossed Victoria on Monday. Snow began falling in the morning, and then it continued through to Tuesday afternoon as a cyclone moved across Victoria and New South Wales bringing damaging winds, but masses of snow. Up to a metre in 36 hours in the highest spots on the Main Range.
The storm eased up a little on Wednesday and Thursday, but another similar weather system is due to arrive on Friday night bringing more blizzards and snow across the Alps.
The first storm was a season-starter; the second system should ensure most of the lifts are open with a good, deep snowpack across the Australian ski resorts. The middle of the coming week looks like bringing fantastic skiing and some clearer, less windy conditions. This weekend will be windy on Saturday and Sunday with lots of snow again!
The weather arrived in spectacular fashion at the beginning of the week, temperatures dropped and snow started to fall late on Monday morning with 60cms by Tuesday afternoon. This allowed Hotham to open a few lifts on Tuesday and by Wednesday Big D, the Summit, Road Runner and Village were all operating. Expect Heavenly Valley lift to be a chance this weekend.
Falls Creek now has around 60cms on the ground, enough to open most of the back part of the ski resort. Snow started late on Monday morning into Tuesday afternoon. Nothing was open on Tuesday, but four lifts were opened on Wednesday including Towers chairlift, with Drovers Dream opened today. More ski lifts should open on the weekend.
Mt Buller had 23cms of snow fall by Tuesday morning, then another 18cms by Wednesday morning. Unfortunately a bit of rain on Wednesday night into Thursday spoiled the good times. Nevertheless, six lifts are open at Buller including Wombat and Shakey Knees already. Good job!
|Perisher 25 June [Source: Perisher FB page]|
The snow started falling at Perisher on Monday afternoon and by Wednesday morning the ski resort was white all over and claiming over a metre of snow had fallen. Perisher had already done so well to open without hardly any snow, remember. By Tuesday, 12 lifts were turning, and by today there were 32 lifts ...a brilliant result!
Snow also started falling at Thredbo on Monday afternoon with up to 90cms by Wednesday morning at the top and about 30cms in the village. The ski resorts opened the Cruiser Area and Friday Flat to start, then 5 lifts were running on Wednesday and six today. About one metre snowdepth up high and less in the village.
In New Zealand meanwhile, the ski resorts look on enviously at the snow falling in Australia. There was a run of sunny days in the South Island on the weekend which meant some nice conditions for the few open skifields.
And then ... heavy rain on Tuesday spoiled the party. A combination of rain and high winds on Wednesday closed most open ski resorts across the South Island, causing others who hadn't opened yet to delay their opening days.
Unfortunately it looks like more rain this weekend except for the highest peaks. Early next week looks far more promising with some cooler temperatures and an end to the warm northerly winds. New Zealand usually starts a little later than Australia and July is when things really get going.
North Canterbury and Nelson
Rainbow is still due to open on the 5th July. Hanmer Springs has delayed opening also until Saturday 5th July due to lack of snow. Mt Lyford says it will open "when the snow comes".
|Cardrona 26 June [Source: Cardrona FB page]|
Ohau looks unlikely to open this weekend after the rains, and Roundhill announced a delay to its planned opening day on Saturday. Meanwhile Mt Dobson gets going on 4th July.
Treble Cone was sunny then the rain came on Tuesday. The ski resort has announced it will delay its opening day, with no news on when it will open. Cardrona has managed to open the Captains Basin with limited trails, a pretty impressive job given the lack of natural snow and helped by snowmaking. The lift started spinning on Monday. Unfortunately the resort had to close on Wednesday due to rain the day before
and wind. But Cardrona reopened on Thursday for skiing.
Coronet Peak (30/25cms) saw huge rainfalls on Tuesday which caused it to close to drain out. The Peak managed to reopen again on Thursday with solid conditions up top to mush down the bottom. The Remarkables has postponed its opening one week.