Squaw Valley, CA Announces November 23rd Opening Day

Dylan Cautela |
Looking good
Testing the systems near Papoose in the lower mountain beginner area. Source; Squaw Alpine.

Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows have announced their November 23rd opening day. Mother Nature has delivered some good early season snow in the Lake Tahoe region for October, but since then, it has slowed down a bit. Weather and temps have been mild and very much like fall for the beginning of November, but a shift in the pattern next week could make for some great snowmaking and natural snow opportunity in the area.

So what has Squaw been up to while they wait for this change? Certainly not sitting like frogs on a bump on a log waiting to jump! They’re staying one step ahead of the game and their competitors by doing additional lift improvements and maintenance, conducting their annual ski patrol training, installing new avalanche mitigation equipment, updating and preparing snowmaking gear, and loads of other much needed maintenance programs that shouldn’t be held off until the white gold flies.

“We’re not just laying around and waiting. We’ve been working on projects all summer and every day up until we open.”

Chris Woo, Director of Lift Maintenance

You need more grease!
Doing the daily grind to make sure we’re all safe and the lifts keep spinning so we keep getting the goods. Source; Squaw Alpine.

Squaw Alpine has been going non-stop this summer, staying ahead of the curve for the possible La Niña year. They have begun installation of 4 new Gazex systems, a remote controlled system that produces a blast with the combination of oxygen and propane, which will help mitigate the avalanche danger from a super deep year. These systems will be ready to fire once the snow piles up and the resort opens.

Should La Niña end up not following through, the team over at Squaw Alpine has prepared arrangements to make this a killer season no matter the snowfall. With over $1 million in snowmaking improvements there should be ample coverage to have some great groomed skiing, which is yet another improvement Squaw has moved forward with. The purchase of two brand new winch cats means more grooming on steep terrain can be done for great runs such as Headwall Face, Tower 16, and Women’s Downhill.

“While warm temps continue to prevent any production, we are using this time to familiarize new team members with the mountain as well as continuing repairs/improvements. Fine tuning of the system is continuing, with all eyes on next week for some snowmaking temperatures.”

Evan Nielsen, Snowmaking Supervisor

Thank you all for your hard work and dedication.
Ski Patrol working with the local CareFlight devision out of Reno to ensure any severe injury gets treated as efficiently and effectively as possible. Source; Squaw Alpine.

The warm trend set this November hasn’t helped any resorts across the nation, Copper Mountain in Colorado unfortunately had to push back their opening day as well, but the improvements that Squaw and Alpine have made will be a huge help in making this winter superb, no matter the weather.

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