Most ski areas want to keep every ounce of snow they get. But a monster of a storm forced Mt. Washington Alpine Resort to truck snow off the mountain while it still amassed the most snow base in Canada.
The resort sailed into January after record holiday crowds with a snow base that it usually achieved much later in the season. "We do get some of the deepest snow in Canada. A good Christmas snow base is 250 centimeters (98 inches) by Christmas," spokesperson Brent Curtain told OnTheSnow. "But to have 520 centimeters (205 inches) by Christmas Day we've never seen. That's the most snow we've seen accumulated in that short of time."
A 500-centimeter base is usually what Mt. Washington gets much later at the peak of the season. "It didn't stop snowing for almost three weeks, and right before it ended, it came down with a fury. To get that at the first three weeks of operation was crazy," said Curtain. The snow base for the resort in early January stood at nearly double nearby resorts in British Columbia and far surpassed all Canadian and most U.S. resorts.
The resort had so much snow fall so fast that trucks had to haul it off the mountain in order to open the parking lots for the holidays. "At it peak, the storm dropped 10 feet of snow in the parking lots in three days, and five feet came down in 12 hours," added Curtain. Snow buried vehicles and entrances to buildings while huge walls of snow surrounded parking lots.
The resort even added about 200 more parking spaces by shoving excess snow to over ditches and flattening it out to accommodate holiday visitors. "We saw record crowds through the holidays," said Curtain. "Everybody wanted to see the big snows."