For the 2018-19 ski season, Park City Mountain (both the main resort and Canyons Village) is scheduled to open on Wednesday, November 21st, 2018 and close for the season on Sunday, April 7th. EPIC Season Passes are already on sale, including EPIC Local and EPIC 4-day passes. The main resort is also advertising a deal where you can get 30% off your lodging costs by booking your stay before November 1st.
What’s the Seasonal Weather Forecast for 2018-19?
Last year, the Farmer’s Almanac gave false hope by predicting a wetter than average winter for the Intermountain Region. It didn’t exactly turn out that way though. The forecast for the beginning of the ski season is much the same. The long-range forecast has a snowstorm predicted for Park City for the end of October/beginning of November, but temperatures are also supposed to stay warm generally in October. The overall winter forecast also suggests slightly warmer than average temperatures with normal precipitation levels.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is largely in agreement. While there may be slightly more precipitation in the early winter, it could dry out. The NOAA is also predicting a 70 percent chance of El Nino occurring this year. Their maps for the first half and second half of the ski season that we may struggle to keep our snow around in the lower elevations.
Enjoy the Slopes Whenever You Can, The Future is Uncertain
I heard someone speculate that global warming could increase annual snowfall because warmer air masses are able to hold more moisture. Yes, warmer air holds more moisture and this might very well lead to more snow in the highest elevations, but in Park City, too much of this precipitation stands to fall as rain. (It’s also worth pointing out that rain isn’t as good as snow for Utah’s water supply.)
The takeaway for me is to get up into the mountains as soon and as often as I can. And to hope the seasonal weather forecast is wrong for a second year in a row. I know the snow-making machines have gotten a lot better, but they’re still no substitute….Maybe the only thing more cliché than talking about the weather is talking about how much I can’t wait for the ski season to start. But I don’t care! I want the mountains to be covered with snow, and for ski resorts to open, and I know I’m not the only one.