The winter is well underway now in the southern hemisphere with resorts open across all major skiing countries, and with some major storms set to hit ski areas, the future looks white!
The best-known resort in Chile, Valle Nevado just received three feet of new snow and announced it’ll be opening today, a week early. Neighboring resort El Colorado, just over the peak from Valle Nevado, is already cranking its lifts. The nearby resort of Portillo, with 5-feet of fresh snow, is looking loaded and set to open the following weekend. The long-term forecast is looking favorable too, with multiple feet of fresh snow expected over the next week to ten days across most resorts.
Las Leñas will be the first resort in Argentina to open when they open their doors tomorrow. They received a few inches of snow at the beginning of the week, and the long-term forecast looks good for them too. The majority of Argentinian resorts will open the following weekend.
Australia and New Zealand
New Zealand got off to a great start, with Mt. Hutt and The Remarkables already open, and Cardrona, Coronet Peak, and Whakapapa opening tomorrow. Whakapapa is forecast 10″ fresh snow this weekend, so the opening weekend should be pretty sweet.
But Australia is where it’s at this weekend, with a storm they’ve nicknamed ‘Stormin’ Norman’ set to kickstart their season. Heavy snowfall at Perisher is seeing a total of up to 26″ predicted from this early storm. They already had 13″ of snow in the past two days, with 10″ in the last 24 hours alone. Blizzard-like conditions have brought massive dumps of snow to other Alpine resorts as well. Thredbo received 6″ of fresh snow overnight as a cold front brought wild winds and another 20″ is expected to fall on the resort over the weekend.
Mt. Baw Baw, Perisher, and Mt. Buller are already open, with four others, including Thredbo, set to join them this weekend.
No snow the last week or so for Africa’s ski resorts and the forecast is just as bleak. Afriski in Lesotho are open and Tiffindell is one of 3 South African resorts open right now.