This February's snow fall has been record breaking or back breaking - depending upon your perspective. If you have been shoveling - you might feel this month has been more the latter. Boston received 43 inches of snow, which is 9 inches above the norm, and a lot of white matter to remove with shovels, plows, and pay loaders. The irony of back to back weekend storms in February was not lost on skiers stuck snow blowing their driveways and digging out instead of driving to their favorite ski resort.
But skiers and riders have had a creamy, dreamy month in the mountains, with last night's snow storm bringing the icing on the cake. This coming weekend looks like the first in three where the roads may be relatively dry and storm free, snow was delivered to the mountains this time - not so much in the cities.
On the ski slopes, Sunday River received over four feet of fresh snow this month, including a foot in just the past 24 hours. Saddleback has received 27 inches in just the past week, Sugarloaf got 20.
Jay Peak is posting 257 inches of snow this season. Burke, Killington, Pico, Okemo, Sugarbush and Mount Snow are all 100% open heading into March, after the last storm Rocky (more Weather Channel names). Attitash and Wildcat are hosting their first $40 Fridays tomorrow, with over a foot of freshies in the past 24 hours.
Out west, the season started slow for Colorado and Utah with a dry, warm January, but it started snowing when I visited in late January and has been snowing ever since. This is good news not just for skiers, but for their water supply as snow is a key source of year round water in the arid Rockies.
It's been a more consistent powder winter in the Northwest, Brundage in Idaho has base depths of 93 inches, Mt Bachelor in Oregon has a ten foot base. Montana's Big Sky and Moonlight Basin, Wyoming's Grand Targhee and Jackson Hole have had strong snow all season, and last year as well - proving the north gets more snow these days.
Tomorrow is March - often the snowiest month of winter, when snow tends to fall more in the mountains than lower elevation and latitude. The early part of next week looks dry and clear, perfect for skiing all this accumulation. So have your skis ready, this is it folks. Photos by Greg Burke Sugarbush powder skiing
Eric Wilbur is a lifelong recreational skier who spends most of his winter and spring in the mountains of New England. He does not ski in jeans. You can read more of Eric's work here.
Heather Burke is an award winning ski journalist with over a decade of ski news coverage. As a former ski instructor and a ski parent, she knows the ski biz from the inside out. She and her family visit New England ski resorts, as well as the West and Canada, to report on the latest trends and their best family finds. Her husband Greg takes all the accompanying photos, and their work can be seen at www.familyskitrips.com and www.luxuryskitrips.com.