There was plenty of good, bad and ugly happening at the ski slopes this past week, but with the weather settling down, skiers and snowboarders should be able to finally get back to the mountainsides.

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There was plenty of good, bad and ugly happening at the ski slopes this past week, but with the weather settling down, skiers and snowboarders should be able to finally get back to the mountainsides.

Eastbound Interstate 90 to the Summit at Snoqualmie, SR 42 to Mount Baker, US 12 to White Pass and US 2 to Stevens Pass Resort have reopened, allowing normal operations to resume after all four shut down. Check for updates at http://www.wsdot.com. (The last time all four mountain roadways – Mount Baker, Stevens Pass, White Pass and Snoqualmie – were shut down simultaneously occurred on Jan. 9, 2009.)

A  snow plow works to clear Interstate 90 at mile post 28 Monday. (Mike Siegel / The Seattle Times)
A snow plow works to clear Interstate 90 at mile post 28 Monday. (Mike Siegel / The Seattle Times)

It has been a soggy affair the past two days with 3 to 5 inches of water drenching the Cascades’ western slopes due to a warm front that originated in the southern Pacific Ocean.

A winter weather advisory has been issued as a low pressure system with cooler temperatures and snowfall crosses the state Friday and into early Saturday. The convergence zone is the central Cascades, with a freezing level of 1,000 to 2,500 feet.

Expected snowfall amounts in the next two days are 8 to 14 inches at Mount Baker; 8 to 15 inches at Stevens Pass; 6 to 10 inches at Alpental at Snoqualmie; 6 to 12 inches at Crystal Mountain; and 6 to 10 inches at White Pass.

Then a high-pressure system will build over the Pacific Northwest late Saturday and Sunday with mostly sunny to partly cloudy skies continuing into the early part of next week.

High winds along the upper hills at Crystal Mountain Resort means access to the top remained closed on Friday, but the Discovery, Chinook and Forest Queen lifts were spinning. On a positive note, their snowpack is deep with a total of 60 inches of new snow since Feb. 3.

Blue skies greet skiers and riders at the Mount Baker Ski Area this past weekend. Photo courtesy of the Mount Baker Ski Area.
Blue skies greet skiers and riders at the Mount Baker Ski Area this past weekend. Photo courtesy of the Mount Baker Ski Area.

While not on a record pace for snowfall totals this season, places like Mount Baker are seeing an amazing amount, with 397 inches reported earlier this past week. The record was 1,140 inches in the 1998-99 season and the runner-up was 857 inches in 2010-11.

Additionally, the Mount Baker Ski Area management said to pay close attention on your drive through Maple Falls and Glacier where a huge 42-inch snow base along the roadside is the most snow seen in this area in many years.

Elsewhere, the total snowfall this season is 238 inches at the Summit at Snoqualmie; 284 inches at Stevens Pass Resort; 257 inches at Crystal Mountain Resort; 283 to 316 inches at White Pass Ski Area; and 299 inches at Whistler Blackcomb Resort in British Columbia.

The Loup Loup Ski Bowl – located between Twisp and Okanogan on Highway 20 – is open Wednesday, and Friday to Sunday from 9 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. The Hurricane Ridge Ski and Snowboard Area in Olympic National Park is open Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., weather conditions permitting.

In Montana, Whitefish Resort is open daily with a 91-inch base (3 to 6 inches new snow), and has 101 trails open with night skiing offered Friday and Saturday. Big Sky Resort is open daily with a 48-inch base and 72-inch base on the upper summit (3 to 5 inches new snow).

A skier enjoys the powder from the recent heavy snowfall. (Photo courtesy of Jameson Florence)
A skier enjoys the powder from the recent heavy snowfall. (Photo courtesy of Jameson Florence)

Open daily in British Columbia are Cypress (132-inch base); Whistler-Blackcomb (109); Mount Seymour (101-138); Grouse (102-124); Whitewater (101-102); Mount Washington (77-95); Revelstoke (71-85); Hudson Bay (43-67); Big White (74); Sun Peaks (57-69); Silver Star (47-71); Kicking Horse (38-73); Fernie (43-93); Panorama (43-62); and Red (72).

Open daily in Idaho are Lookout Pass (112-129); Schweitzer (64-90); Tamarack (39-65); Sun Valley (100-146); Brundage Mountain (57-76); Bogus Basin (70-76); Silver (60-70); and Pomerelle (117-131).

Open daily in Oregon are Mount Hood Meadows (100-170); Mount Bachelor (107-133); Mount Ashland (95-128); Willamette Pass (75-112); Hoodoo (88); Timberline (119); and Mount Hood Ski Bowl (62-74).

The gate at Longmire to Paradise in Mount Rainier National Park is open with chains required on two-wheel drive vehicles from Longmire on up. All vehicles must carry tire chains.

Ranger-guided snowshoe walks are offered at Mount Rainier National Park, Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest and Olympic National Park’s Hurricane Ridge. Snowshoe rentals are available at the Summit at Snoqualmie and Stevens Pass Resort, with accessible trails nearby.

Cross-country skiers have many trail choices at Lake Wenatchee State Park; Scottish Lakes High Camp; Paradise in Mount Rainier National Park; Mazama; Echo Ridge; Methow Valley; Leavenworth Winter Sports Club; White Pass; Stevens Pass; and Cabin Creek, east of Snoqualmie off I-90.

Upcoming slope-side events

The Masters Over the Hills Slalom Race is 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday at The Summit at Snoqualmie’s Summit West area. The race is for USSA Masters athletes with valid memberships, and a temporary license can be purchased for non-members. Then join the fun at the Rainier ‘R’ Après Ski Party 3 to 5 p.m. on Saturday at Timberwolf Bar & Grill at Summit West, with music by DJ Passion. Details: http://www.summitatsnoqualmie.com/calendar.

The Legendary Banked Slalom Ski Race is Feb. 10-12 at the Mount Baker Ski Area. Also show your love to a sweetheart by making plans to head up for the Valentine’s Après Ski & Ride at the Raven Hut Lodge from 3 to 5 p.m. on Tuesday. Cost is $20 per person. Enjoy hors d’oeuvres by Tom DeBari, live music, a free photo booth, and beer and wine for purchase. Details: http://www.mtbaker.us.

It’s time to start making plans to participate in the Jimmie Huega Express SKI for MS – formerly known as Vertical Express – on Feb. 25 at Crystal Mountain Resort. The vertical challenge allows participants a chance to see who can ski the most vertical feet. Register for $25 for all on-mountain activities, breakfast, and Après Party or $25 and raise $350 for VIP treatment, including a three-day lift ticket, all on-mountain activities, breakfast, lunch and dinner, T-shirt, and the Après Party. All proceeds benefit Can Do Multiple Sclerosis, a national nonprofit organization. The next Military Appreciation Day is 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on March 10 and April 9. Have a valid Military or Department of Defense ID card and enjoy a half-price lift ticket. Details: https://crystalmountainresort.com/.

There are plenty of activities happening on the slopes of Stevens Pass Resort. The Biathlon Race Series is Saturday and Sunday at the Nordic Center. The USASA Slopestyle Event is Saturday. Cost is $40 for first time competitors, and includes one-day membership and first time event fee. The Sego Skis Demo is this weekend. Details: https://www.stevenspass.com.

The Women’s Escape Saturday Session is 7:30 a.m. on Saturday at the Mission Ridge Ski & Board Resort, near Wenatchee. Enjoy morning yoga in the lodge, coffee, lift ticket, half a day of instruction, lunch, an afternoon free ski/ride, and Après Happy Hour to the end of the day. Cost is $85 with lift ticket, and $20 rentals if needed. Discounts for season pass holders or women who sign up for two or more participants. The Twilight Snowshoe Trek is 4:30 p.m. on Saturday. Cost is $10, and snowshoes may be rented for $15. Details: https://www.missionridge.com/operating-schedule.

Chef Vikram Vij, owner of Vij’s in Vancouver, B.C. will be in the Roundhouse at Whistler-Blackcomb Resort from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, and visitors can sample his famous curry. Then take in the free Ice Show at 7 p.m., held every Sunday through March 26 at the Whistler Resort Village. Come see performers celebrate the winter with music, dance, and a fireworks show, and watch world-class athletes flip and twist through a burning ring of fire. Details: https://www.whistlerblackcomb.com/.

Latest snow and lift reports:

Which ski areas are open and closed:


Resort

Hours

Base


Summit West, Snoqualmie Open: 4pm-10pm Friday, and Wednesday to Feb. 17; 9am-10pm Saturday, and Feb. 18; 9am-5pm Sunday, and Feb. 19; closed Monday and Tuesday, and Feb. 13-14 (1 inch new snow) 90 inches

Summit Central, Snoqualmie Open: 9am-10pm Friday and Saturday, and Monday to Feb. 18; 9am-5pm Sunday, and Feb. 19 (1 inch new snow) 90 inches

Summit East, Snoqualmie Open: 9am-4pm Saturday and Sunday, and Feb. 18-19; closed Friday, and Monday to Feb. 17 (1 inch new snow) 90 inches

Nordic Center, Snoqualmie Open: 9am-4pm Friday to Sunday, and Feb. 17-19; closed Monday to Feb. 16 (1 inch new snow) 90 inches

Alpental, Snoqualmie Open: 9am-10pm Friday and Saturday, and Tuesday to Feb. 18; 9am-4pm Sunday, and Feb. 19; closed Monday (1 inch new snow) 100-142 inches

Mount Baker Ski Area Open daily: 9am-3:30pm (3 inches new snow) 133-195 inches

Crystal Mountain Open daily: 9am-4pm (2 inches new snow) 67-81 inches

Stevens Pass Closed: Plans to reopen possibly Friday for night skiing. Normal operations are 9am-4pm; night skiing until 10 pm Wednesday to Feb. 20 (1 inch new snow) 91-99 inches

White Pass Closed: Plans to reopen daily on Saturday 8:45am-4pm (2 inches new snow) 80-95 inches

Mission Ridge Ski & Board Open: 9am-4pm; closed Tuesday and Wednesday; and night skiing until 8 p.m. on Saturdays only (6 to 7 inches new snow) 50-54 inches

49° North Mountain Open: 9am-3:30pm Friday to Tuesday; closed Wednesday and Thursday (2 to 6 inches new snow) 89-137 inches

Mt. Spokane Ski & Snowboard Open: 9am-4pm Sunday and Monday; 9am-9:30pm Wednesday to Saturday; closed Monday and Tuesday (no new snow) 57-73 inches

Ski Bluewood Open: 9am-4pm Wednesday to Sunday (no new snow) 56-72 inches

Whistler-Blackcomb Open daily: 9am-5pm (3 to 7 inches new snow) 109 inches

Mt. Bachelor Open daily: 9am-4pm (2 inches new snow) 107-133 inches

Leavenworth Winter Sports Club Open: All nordic trails open daily; tubing open 3pm-7pm Wednesday and Friday, and 9:30am-5pm Saturday and Sunday; ski hill open 3pm-8pm Wednesday and Friday, 9:30am-5pm Saturday to Sunday (no new snow)
 36 inches

Methow Trails Open daily: All nordic trails open at Sun Mountain, Rendezvous, Winthrop (Bob is closed) and Mazama (2 inches new snow) 40 inches