Park City, Utah, enjoys an impressive ski season almost every year. With breathtaking mountains, gorgeous resorts and award-winning slopes, Park City is every ski enthusiast’s dream come true; no matter what the weather does. However, with predictions of an extremely snowy winter this year, Park City could see some truly incredible ski conditions come November, December and into January and February. Skiers of every skill level will be waiting to see just how this winter’s snowfall will unfold and what kind of ski conditions it will create. If you haven’t booked your winter ski vacation yet, now is the time to make sure you get a seat at the table!
So What Is El Niño, and Why Is It Great for Skiers in Park City?
El Niño is a cyclical weather phenomenon that raises ocean temperatures across the Pacific. El Niños are capable of wreaking havoc on weather patterns across the globe, bringing an increase of precipitation across the United States. You can expect lots of deep snow in Utah anytime an El Niño weather pattern is in effect! During the 1983-1984 El Niño, Utah had an awesome snow season that started on November 8 and ended on April 4, with several deep snows dumps throughout the season. The 1997-1998 El Niño gave Utah an even longer snow season, stretching from October 11 to May 25! This year is set to really hit hard!
This year’s El Niño promises to produce winter weather that will be downright perfect for ski enthusiasts eager to get on the slopes. Utah is already getting snow, and weather experts predict inches upon inches of stunning white powder that will make for epic skiing conditions throughout the snow season. Colder temperatures and more snow make for ski vacations filled with busy days on the mountains and nights spent chatting with friends and family around the fire of a warm ski cabin. Can you imagine a better ski vacation!!
El Niño Park City to Create Awesome Ski Conditions
Typically, North America sees a big increase in precipitation when an El Nino occurs. In Northern states like Utah, El Niño means there is likely to be a lot of powdery type snowfall in higher elevations. An increase in snowfall this year due to El Niño weather conditions will surely make for a truly epic ski season! Utah’s mountains will see more than just a light dusting of snow when these weather conditions are in effect. Think layers upon layers of fresh, pristine snow, ready for you to tear through!
While it’s impossible to predict changing weather patterns this far in advance, it is helpful to look at past weather records during El Niño events to determine what this year’s forecast is likely to mean for snowfall across North America. National Weather Service hydrologist Brian McInerney monitors snowpack numbers closely in Utah. He reported that there was an increase in snow during the last two strong El Niño events, in the winters of 1997 and 1983. He says that strong El Niño conditions can result in cooler, wetter conditions for Northern Utah, and this makes skiing on the slopes an absolute dream. What is more fun than putting on a pair of your favorite skis and heading up the mountain for the exhilarating rush of cold, snowy wind in your face!
Planning Your Ski Vacation Around El Niño
If you are planning to take a ski vacation, there is no better time to do it than the late fall and early winter of this year. As of August 2015, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported that El Niño had already moved into “strong” territory, meaning that temperatures have risen significantly in the Pacific Ocean. The El Niño effect is expected to strengthen as winter in North America approaches, and will peak in the late fall and early winter months. The chances of a strong El Niño winter are above 90 percent, and the probability that El Niño will continue into the spring is 85 percent. Since many meteorologists are predicting that El Niño conditions will last into spring, ski enthusiasts can plan for a March or even early April ski vacation if El Niño holds out. Whether you visit Park City in the late fall, winter or early spring, you’re likely to see the incredible snows and gorgeous skiing conditions that avid skiers have been looking forward to all year.
El Niño is already stronger than it was last year and is nearly as strong — if not stronger — than the event of 1997-1998. You’ll almost certainly see more snow this year than you have in the last several years in Park City! You can book your ski vacation at one of Park City’s fantastic ski resorts now, with the confidence that this year’s snowfall will be much heavier and longer-lasting than it has been in the past few years.
What Are You Waiting For? Your Chalet Is Ready!
With El Niño clearly ramping up, Park City looks like it will enjoy a fantastic winter! Every ski fanatic will be stoked to see how this year’s unique weather patterns create the best ski season in years. Higher-than-average snowfall will be welcomed by residents and tourists alike, especially after a few years of below-average snowfall and disappointment on the slopes.
Imagine the thrill of miles of fresh, perfectly packed snow and the excitement of feeling the cold wind in your face and the breathtaking views of Utah’s mountains as you travel back up the mountain in the ski lift for another go. What are you waiting for!
Park City is gearing up for a killer winter and you should be too! Grab your skis, book your room at one of the city’s stunning ski lodges or private cabins, and venture out onto the slopes. Whether you’re just learning to ski or you’re a seasoned professional, you definitely won’t want to miss this year’s winter in Park City.