Last year areas of South America had one of their driest years on record, with many ski areas closing prematurely. This year, however, is the exact opposite, with record snow accumulations across many areas. The problem being, that ski areas are remaining closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Andes mountain range in Chile and Argentina is being dumped on. Mendoza City in Argentina, recorded 5-feet of snow recently, the highest volume of snow ever recorded in the city this early in the season, according to the Argentine National Weather Service.
Corralco in Chile registered snow totals in excess of 13-FEET, which considering the snow season has only just begun, is an unbelievable amount of snow. El Colorado is blanketed in thick powder.
Experts are saying that Las Leñas, Argentina has never seen this much snow so early in the season.
“The abnormal thing is that what has to snow has not snowed these years, that is why now it seems strange to us.”
– Department of Climatology of the Argentine National Weather Service
Despite the once-in-a-lifetime snowfall, some ski areas have already announced they will not be opening at all this winter. Pucon in Chile, and Las Leñas and La Hoya in Argentina will definitely not be opening.
- Related: Ski Pucón First Resort in Chile to Officially Announce They Won’t Open This Winter Due to COVID-19
Many other areas have yet to commit to any sort of opening decisions, although resorts are warning skiers tempted by the snow to avoid their slopes due to high avalanche danger.