Good, Safe Fun: The First Snow vs. the First Ski Day

A little more than a couple weeks ago, the benches and much of the Wasatch Front saw between 10-12 inches of snow. This was great for those, like yours truly, who were looking to get out there and start getting into ski shape by dusting off their skis and gliding over backcountry trails. And sure, it gets us all that much more excited for ski season. But it’s not ski season. It’s still shoulder season and without resorts that are open with running lifts, it makes the full ski experience hard to come by. Aside from one broken bone injury, we didn’t hear about any life-threatening accidents yet this year.

And now, as people who live in the mountains know all too well, much of that early season snow is likely to be for naught as a heat wave moves through the area this weekend, bringing 60-degree afternoons here in Park City and 50-degree afternoons in Alta. Along with long-term, seasonal forecasts that seem to predict middle-of-the-road averages, there is definitely an early sense that, for better and for worse, this year could be a volatile one for snow conditions.