Another wave of moisture should produce a decent shot of snow or rain, and will be heaviest on the west slopes of the Cascades heading into Saturday and early Sunday.
The ski and snowboard options are growing with White Pass and Mission Ridge opening for winter operations, and more snow is on tap in the days ahead.
“The crew says it looks like we can run Great White, Platter and Carpet for certain on Saturday and Sunday with plenty of snow on the east side of the area,” said Kathleen Goyette, the White Pass Ski Area marketing director. “We will be adding more lifts if we get more snow, and at this point we plan on operating daily (from 8:45 a.m. to 4 p.m.) conditions permitting.”
Other “go to now” options include the Mount Baker, Crystal Mountain and Stevens Pass, which are all open daily with good snow depth coverage from top to bottom.
At the Summit at Snoqualmie, another big dump of snow could be enough to get a firm idea on when they might be able to open for winter operations.
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“We definitely need another big storm, but the good news is about halfway up the hill at Summit West (3,500 foot elevation level) we have a decent snow depth coverage,” said Guy Lawrence, the marketing director at the Summit at Snoqualmie who mentioned their 70-year opening-date average is between Dec. 4-7.
“We could be opening sooner than later and right now we’re counting the snowflakes,” Lawrence said. “It appears we are on track for our average opening date time frame and will hope for the best.”
The Mission Ridge Ski & Board Resort opened Friday for its 50th anniversary winter season with limited operations on Chairs 1 and 2, and Pike Peak rope tow.
In eastern Washington, 49 Degrees North Mountain Resort and Mount Spokane Ski and Snowboard Park opened Friday.
Forecasters say a weak disturbance may bring light to moderate snow showers through Friday, and a much stronger system will generate a mixed bag of snow or rain heading into the weekend.
Another wave of moisture should produce a decent shot of snow or rain, and will be heaviest on the west slopes of the Cascades heading into Saturday and early Sunday. The freezing level will hover between 1,500 and 3,500 feet in the northern and central Cascades, and 3,000 to 4,000 feet in the southern Cascades. Look for a big dip in the temperature and light snow showers Sunday with a freezing level from the surface up to 2,000 feet.
The next series of weather systems through Sunday are expected to bring 10 to 20 inches at Mount Baker; 12 to 28 inches at Stevens Pass; 10 to 22 inches at Alpental on Snoqualmie Pass; 11 to 21 inches at Crystal Mountain; and 9 to 16 inches at White Pass.
In British Columbia, Whistler-Blackcomb Resort (68-inch base); Cypress Mountain (60); Sun Peaks (30-41); Silver Star (17-41); Mount Seymour (26-37); and Grouse Mountain (26-37) are open daily.
In Idaho, Schweitzer Mountain (20-40) opened Friday for daily operations; Sun Valley (12-13) is open daily; Lookout Pass (14-21) is open Thursday to Sunday; and Silver Mountain (31-53) is open Friday to Sunday.
In Oregon, Mount Ashland (24-28) is open Sunday and Monday; Willamette Pass (30) is open Saturday and Sunday; Mount Bachelor (28-46) has three lifts open daily; Timberline Lodge (32) has five lifts open daily; and Mount Hood Meadows (37-53) has six lifts open daily.