No precipitation in sight for Mount Washington

Mount Washington Alpine Resort expects more warm temperatures this week, and there’s no precipitation in sight for the mountain.

Mount Washington Alpine Resort expects more warm temperatures this week, and there’s no precipitation in sight for the mountain, according to resort spokesperson Brent Curtain.

The mountain saw peak alpine temperatures of as high as 10C last week. After a brief cool-down to temperatures between 3C and 5C, temperatures were again expected to spike this week, Curtain said Tuesday afternoon.

“The inversion is definitely going to be posing some challenges and as a result we’re going to be pushing a lot of snow around over the next few days,” he said, adding the forecast doesn’t look good in terms of snow either.

There’s “no precipitation that we can see; it’s still remaining dry.”

The mountain opened over a month later than scheduled this season due to lack of snow. As of opening day Jan. 13 it had a mid-mountain base of 100 centimetres. The base had dropped to 80 centimetres by Tuesday, but Curtain said there’s still “a substantial amount” of snow for crews to move around and cover up any obstacles on the slopes.

According to Curtain, resort staff have not yet discussed closing the mountain due to lack of snow, and conditions are continually evaluated.

“Another three to four days of inversion we’re going to have to re-evaluate basically after we see this next warm system come through,” he said, pointing out cooler overnight temperatures mean the snow doesn’t melt as fast as some would think with 10C daytime highs.

Though the weather is posing challenges for the resort, plenty of people have been up the mountain enjoying the sunny weather above the clouds covering the Valley.

“There’s a lot of people that want to ski and snowboard,” said Curtain. “And, a lot of people do like spring conditions and fair weather, and that’s exactly what you’re getting right now.”

To season pass holders wonder

ing if there will be any sort of refund or a discount on future passes due to lack of snow this year, Curtain said it’s too early for resort staff to make those decisions.

“We want to see what the winter brings us in an entire season before we make a decision on what we’re going to be doing with all the season passes and unused tickets and products like that,” he said, adding snow could still be coming to make the later part of the season great.

“We do have a lot of months left in our winter so we could technically still get a lot of snow and if we were to do a full-scale refund or a carryover of products from this year to next year, for us it’s still a little bit too early to make a call on something like that.”

The Sunrise Chair has been closed so the resort could focus grooming efforts on the core of the mountain and keep the Eagle and Hawk Chairs and the Magic Carpets open.

Afternoon prices went into effect Sunday, which are 25 per cent off a full pass. Night skiing is open Thursday to Sunday from 3:30 p.m. to closing.

Monday was the last day Mount Washington season’s pass holders were able to take advantage of the Whistler Blackcomb ski for free deal set up earlier this month.

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