Strong Sunday Winds Impact Sierra Ski Areas

Connor Phillips | | Industry NewsIndustry News
empty ski area
Few skiers or riders braved the winds enough to drive to Bear Valley on Sunday, only to find that lifts were on wind hold and later closed. For a more detailed report of Bear valley, check out my hometown mountain shoutout. Image: Connor Phillips

Strong winds hit the Sierra Nevada Mountains on Saturday night and continued through Sunday. Some resorts, including Sierra at Tahoe and Bear Valley, closed for the day. Kirkwood, Squaw-Alpine, and Heavenly kept some lifts running, despite Squaw-Alpine reporting winds over 100MPH! This storm comes after a bluebird, warm, and windless Saturday.

At times, snow blowing across roads created white-out conditions for drivers. The video below gives a sense of the sustained winds and snow coverage on Sunday (Video: Connor Phillips).

A little snow did fall in the Sierras, though strong winds certainly blew it around. Hopefully, the groomers can incorporate that new snow into fresh corduroy. And hopefully, there will be some nice powder stashes to be found.

This weekend I was in Bear Valley, California competing at the 47th annual Bjornloppet cross-country ski race. Pro skiers Kyle Bratrud and Kelsey Phinney traveled from Vermont to compete alongside 63 other racers. The Sunday races were canceled due to wind.

winner of XC skate race
Kyle Bratrud wins the 20k cross-country ski race at the Bjornloppet in Bear Valley, CA. Image: Connor Phillips

Warm and sunny spring conditions are expected to return today.

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