Snow makes a lot of us really happy. We’ve been getting a lot of it (knock on wood).
If a storm is rolling in and you are ready for a day of deep powder skiing, you not only want to find the best powder stash, you need to hit it before everyone else. To help you in your quest for preparedness, we have compiled our favorite weather sites so that you are tuned into ski conditions in both the dumps and the droughts.
Here are our six favorite sites (in no particular order )to chart the storms , check ski conditions and find the freshest snow.
1. The Utah Avalanche Center
Know before you go.
The Utah Avalanche Center (UAC) is a nonprofit organization that partners with the National Forest Service. They operate with the mission to keep people safe while enjoying winter backcountry areas. They report on the entire State of Utah, divided into eight regions. Their programs include Avalanche Forecasting, Avalanche Preparedness (Know Before You Go) and Avalanche Education. The UAC works closely with local ski resorts, the Utah Department of Transportation, ski guide operators, search and rescue groups and law enforcement to share up-to-date information and training. https://utahavalanchecenter.org/
2. Wasatch Snow Forecast
An unofficial but great resource.
The Wasatch Snow Forecast (WSF) is a weather blog that looks at snowfall for Northern Utah. The site seeks to give weather updates and explains the science behind the snowstorms that bring us the fluffy white stuff. It is put together by Evan Thayer who is a hobbyist meteorologist and an avid skier. WSF uses computer models and weather charts to bring you the best forecast possible. WSF focuses on snowfall in the Wasatch Mountain Range but sometimes covers mountains in Southern Utah and the Uintas. http://www.wasatchsnowforecast.com/
3. Ski Utah Snow Report
Your best quick day-of resource.
The Ski Utah site is managed by the Utah Ski and Snowboard Association which is a nonprofit trade organization that promotes Utah’s ski and snowboard industry. Their members represent resorts, lodging, transportation, retail, restaurants and other ski and snowboard related services. They offer detailed snow reports of all ski resorts with links to purchase lift tickets and even an online gear store. The Ski Utah Snow Report is one of our favorites for getting a quick glance of who got the “monster dumps”. https://www.skiutah.com/snowreport
Weather geeks, unite.
Users refer to the NOAA, or National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency, as “Noah”. NOAA is a government agency that monitors weather all over the globe. They provide weather forecasts, storm warnings and climate monitoring to bring you reliable weather information. Be sure to check out the radar and satellite imagery, cameras, forecast discussions and more. http://forecast.weather.gov
5. Weather Underground
A great all-around weather app.
The best part of the “Wunderground” is its hyper-local nature. With a community of over 180,000 members providing data from their personal weather stations, chances are that someone in your neighborhood is updating that info. Personal weather stations often include photos, so if snow is falling down the street, you can see it happening in real time. Weather station data is combined with scientific expertise of meteorologists for weather forecasting. Other helpful information is available on the website like storm warning reports, avalanche reports and lots more. All of this comes in a handy app for your smartphone. wunderground.com
Get micro with your planning.
For ski conditions in Park City, the resorts are a great resource. This is especially true if you know exactly where you want to go. They are great about sharing the latest snowfall on their websites and social media. For your favorite resorts, it’s worth the click to follow them on Twitter as well as Facebook. You can learn when new terrain is opening, whether something has been on wind hold, other planned closures and which slopes were groomed that day.
Honorable Mention: Utah Commuter Link
Transportation as it relates to weather is important because you most likely need to travel to where you want to ski. The Utah Department of Transportation maintains a very useful website and app that details road conditions, accidents and other delays. They offer weather alerts and alert you of restrictions, such as if vehicles require 4-wheel drive or chains. An extensive network of webcams has you looking down the highway at any time. This app isn’t just useful for skiing, it will also help you travel safely throughout the state. http://commuterlink.utah.gov/
Once you catch wind of a storm, most weather geeks will not just look at one of these sites, they probably look at all of them. Do you have a favorite resource for Park City ski conditions that we forgot?
Just one last thing to mention, don’t forget to turn on your “out of office” reply. See you on the slopes!