The Arizona Daily Sun reports the Arizona Snowbowl will keep lifts turning until May 19, thanks to favorable weather conditions and a record number of skiers, making the 160-days of 2018/19 their longest season ever. The previous record of 144 days was set in the winter of 2016-2017.
Officials say the resort recorded 332″ of snow this winter, the second most in the last two decades, although remaining open will not be possible without machine-made snow using reclaimed water.
“We’re certainly excited to be able to extend the season for this long, it’s been a tremendous season in many ways,” Rob Linde, assistant general manager for Arizona Snowbowl said.
The longest Snowbowl was able to stay open before it introduced artificial snow, was April 26. This date was reached in 1981-82, 1992-93 and again in the 1997-98 winter seasons. Snowbowl ceased snowmaking operations in January this winter, but cool temperatures, snowfall, and rain kept existing snow from melting while adding to its current inch-count. Current temperatures on the mountain remain below freezing at night and in the 40s and 50s during the day. According to Snowbowl, 35 ski runs are open.
Over the weekend, Agassiz Lodge was the only restaurant in operation on the mountain. Hart Prairie Lodge is closed for the remainder of the season as the resort has reduced operations with its final day approaching.