"This is going to be a record season for us here at Jackson Hole." - Jackson Hole Mountain Resort Communications Manager Anna Cole
It may not seem like it with more snow on the ground today, but the ski season is wrapping up and the state of Wyoming has seen record snowfall this year. Jackson Hole Mountain Resort Communications Manager Anna Cole says, "This is going to be a record season for us here at Jackson Hole."
Jackson Hole Mountain Resort first opened its lift in 1966 and this year the resort saw the second largest amount of snowfall on record. Jackson Hole Ski Patrolman Bob Comey says, "Our snow depths right now our close to as deep as we've seen this time of year in the last 39 years," while Cole agrees "This has been the perfect storm this season with February being record breaking."
The record snowfall has had a major impact on the resort itself. Director of Business Development Bill Lewkowitz says, 'We've seen big crowds all throughout the year and no slow period. So we've been pretty lucky."
Although, now all states have been as fortunate as Wyoming; California saw drought conditions in January, where some ski resorts didn’t even open their lifts "Riding the lifts in January you get on the lift and someone that just came from Whistler they were on vacation there and they didn't have any snow. They you know left there vacation at other ski areas to come here because we had a lot of snow," Comey said. Cole agrees. "I mean we have 450 inches of snow so far this season and other resorts aren't seeing those kinds of numbers. So we feel very lucky and people follow snow."
However, an abundance of snowfall can be a double-edged sword: it’s great for business, but can lead to avalanches, which the state of Wyoming saw a lot of this past season. "We had 36 days from January 28th until March 6th where it snowed 200 inches over those 36 days. Most avalanches occur during or immediately after a storm and that was a 36 day storm cycle. So we were pretty busy during that storm cycle," Comey said.