Give thanks to El Niño, Ullr the snow god, or your local weather forecaster: the Lake Tahoe region and the Eastern Sierra have already received twice as much snow this winter as they did last winter. We're not saying that the California drought is over (this year's record-breaking El Niño can't solve that), but even an average year at this point would be amazing for California skiers and snowboarders.
According to Ski Lake Tahoe, as of January 20, 2016 all ski areas have surpassed the 200-inch mark with Northstar reporting 258 inches this season. Kirkwood has recorded 265 inches already and Heavenly is at 211 inches. So what were last year's abysmal totals? Heavenly didn't even break the 100-inch mark, receiving only 87 inches in 2014-2015. And while Kirkwood did a bit better, last winter's 124 inches was paltry compared to its average of 354. At Mammoth last winter, the ski area only recorded 176 inches total. This winter's total so far? 188 inches. The best news is that more snow is coming; Open Snow's forecast calls for up to two feet of snow this weekend. Enjoy!