We're getting close to the 400-inch mark in season snowfall to date, with the current ski and snowboard season barely hitting full stride.
"Alta Ski Area has received 404 inches of snow, surpassing the total snowfall of the 06/07 season," The resort's Tyler Jackson said in early February. Since then, the ski area has picked up an additional 63 inches, or more than five feet of snowfall in February following a January snowfall that tied an all-time record of 179 inches originally set in 1996. Alta already has received nearly its annual average in snowfall, and it's only mid-February.
Two consecutive months of more than 130 inches of snowfall at Snowbird Ski & Summer Resort have created an epic season. Recent storms have pushed the season-to-date snowfall total at the Little Cottonwood Canyon resort to 383 inches.
Snowbird is reporting a base of 130 inches at mid-mountain at the resort that averages 500 inches a year. Snowbird averaged five inches a day for nearly the entire month of January and is well above a 100-inch base.
Park City Mountain Resort reports a 99-inch base depth. City officials in town declared a snow emergency in late January and closed district schools for the first time in nearly a decade after snow drifts were too deep to get buses out of their garages. Snow removal budgets are kaput and the town has run out of places to pile excess snow.
FYI, if you're heading to Utah to ski during Presidents' Week, be wary of creative parking strategies. You just might find your car at an impound lot. Because of the limited street space due to huge snow dumps, some drivers think it's cool to park where no one else has and they're getting ticketed and towed. Use park-n-ride lots rather than those at, say, Albertson's in Park City.
"We will see an increase in locals coming out and we encourage them to ride the UTA bus and carpool. We have a parking lot devoted to people who carpool near the Snowbird Center," adds Snowbird's Dave Fields.
Cars are allowed to park on the Canyon road when avalanche conditions permit. Park at City Park, the nearby skateboard park, Treasure Mountain Middle School and McPolin Elementary, followed by Park City High School, if the Deer Valley and PCMR lots fill up. There are also pay-to-park underground garages, such as those located under the Town Lift, the Marriott, and the Caledonian Hotel. You also can park at the Utah Olympic Park lot on Hwy 224 and ride the bus into town.