Squaw Alpine, CA Conditions Report: Snow Starts to Fly as 2 Feet or More Expected

Jared Dalen | | Conditions ReportConditions Report

Report from January 5th, 2019

New snow is on its way to Squaw Alpine with 3 storm sets pushing through Saturday – Wednesday with possible totals of 2’-3′ feet or more!

46″ of snow in Tahoe in the next 10 days? We’re liking the GEM model right now… image: tropicaltidbits.com

The Sierra Crest snowpack around Squaw Alpine is at around 71% of its average to date.

The Fire Pit – photo: Jared Dalen

It has been almost two weeks since the last set rolled through, but temperatures have been low, keeping the snow surprisingly soft and wintery on the northern facing aspects. I found some great pockets of snow all over despite the sunny California weather since the holiday storms.

Sean and Ridge, Alpine Meadows Ski Patrol – photo: Jared Dalen

Started my day fall line under the Summit Express chair, looking for north-facing chalky snow that I knew was lurking all over the mountain. There were certainly icy areas due to grooming and direct sun exposure, but there were great turns under the chair below Wolverine. Alpine’s playful terrain in low-tide snow was just what the doctor ordered before the next reset.

After warming up and exploring some terrain under Summit Express, I decided to head over toward Keyhole. Keyhole itself was closed due to icy/low snow conditions in such rowdy terrain. The northern facing aspect was icy/variable with pockets of good snow to be found.

Heading up Summit Express – photo: Jared Dalen

The Summit Express chair runs right up the center of Alpine Meadows, which gives the rider a great view of the hike-accessible terrain of Beaver Bowl and Idiots. The sun was out in all its glory, and the snow looked good enough to lay some turns in. I decided to hike Idiots after lunch to allow the sun to soften up the directly exposed snow on the lines I had been keeping my eye on. You will see in the video above the results of that decision!

After a couple rips, I decided to close my day on Scott’s. Scott’s Chute is a western aspect, so it gets sun nearly all day. I found conditions ranging from spring-like snow to wintery pow! The first 3 shots from the video were in the chute itself.

I can say without hesitation that was the best day I have had riding since the last storm. Snow has started to fly and the anticipation begins as more feet of snow are forecast for the weekend!

For all our powder hounds out there, below are current pictures of many of the classic lines at Squaw Valley. If you plan on taking advantage of this next storm, make sure you know where your rocks and other unmarked objects are. Stay safe out there and take advantage of these awesome early-season conditions! All of the following photos were taken by me yesterday before the storm!

Summit Express over Tahoe – photo: Jared Dalen



image: noaa


Idiots and Beaver – photo: Jared Dalen

Alpine Bowl – photo: Jared Dalen

Great Views of Tahoe – photo: Jared Dalen


Scoping Lines – photo: Jared Dalen

Drop! – photo: Jared Dalen

Hot Laps on Scott’s – photo: Jared Dalen

Matt Blasio Ripping Turns Down Scott’s Chute – photo: Jared Dalen

The Fingers before the storm – photo: Jared Dalen


Look Before You Leap – photo: Jared Dalen


Will McConkey’s get dropped this weekend? – photo: Jared Dalen


West Face of KT22 – photo: Jared Dalen


Cornice Two off Headwall – photo: Jared Dalen


Lines Everywhere – photo: Jared Dalen
The Palisades Taking Shape – photo: Jared Dalen

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