From fire to deep powder – The 21/22 season begins!

Fire

Before the ski season even began for 2021/22,  we returned from a long camping trip on the Oregon coast to the Caldor fire.  Within 2 weeks it was knocking on the door of South Lake Tahoe.  On August 29th, the fire burned through one of our favorite local resorts Sierra at Tahoe.  We were evacuated from our South Lake Tahoe home for almost 3 weeks.  Although the fire spared us due to firefighting efforts and prior forest management, this was a pretty emotional experience for us having the fire only 2 miles from our house and burning one of our big reasons for living where we do.

We will miss skiing at Sierra this year but we are hopeful it will be back next year!

Smoke from the Caldor Fire, August 2021

Smoke from the Caldor Fire, August 2021

October snow

We had great hope when October brought 10 inches of water falling from the sky.  20″ of snow fell at our house and XC skiing started very early.  However, high pressure and warm weather quickly set in and our early season snow was short lived.

First Snow - October 16th 2021

First Snow – October 16th 2021

Dry November

Ironically, November became the 2nd driest month since records were kept.  It was so warm that the resorts couldn’t even make snow to open for Thanksgiving. Boo!

Camping in Death Valley instead of skiing - December 2021

Camping in Death Valley instead of skiing – December 2021

December snow

The snow finally came back on December 9th and the storm door opened.  As of this writing all of the Tahoe resorts are sitting at well over season-to-date averages.  Some are closing in on 50% of their average yearly snowfall!  Our resorts Heavenly and Kirkwood could easily be 100% open if operations allowed for it.

Our ski season started on December 11th.  Although much later than normal, the continuous storms have already given us geat powder skiing at Heavenly just before Christmas. However, great conditions also come with the usual traffic nightmares in and around South Lake Tahoe.

XC Skiing with Sammy - December 2021

XC Skiing with Sammy – December 2021

 

Challenging driving in South Lake Tahoe - December 2021

Challenging driving in South Lake Tahoe – December 2021

Plans

Due to COVID limiting our options last year, we have some catching up to do for the project. We would like to get a couple of Montana resorts done, visit our last Utah resort, and ski 4 more resorts on the East Coast.  This is somewhat ambitious given the current COVID situation. Hopefully, with some luck we should be able to make some great progress.

In between these trips we will enjoy the well above average conditions in Tahoe, which are some of the best in North America right now.  As we sit here writing this on Christmas Eve, we hear the falling snow hitting the window and strong wind gusts outside, promising more powder on Christmas day!

Storm day powder at Heavenly - December 2021

Storm day powder at Heavenly – December 2021

 

Heavenly Powder - December 2021

Heavenly Powder – December 2021

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