This year’s “Godzilla” El Niño is predicted to be the strongest on record. So in preparation for the meteorological phenomenon, we’ve picked five resorts that should be on every skier’s hit list during this year’s El Niño trend.
We’ve included the average snowfalls for each resort compared to their 97/98 season totals.
Note: The 97/98 El Niño was the most powerful in recorded history prior to this year’s phenomenon.
With the highest elevation of any ski area in the state of California, Mammoth Mountain is a go-to during El Niño years, where warmer temperatures can prevent snow from falling at the lower, lake level elevations of the Tahoe area.
Average Snowfall: 400 inches
97/98 Snow Total: 451 inches
Telluride is a heavy favorite during El Niño years due to its ridiculously high elevation and primetime positioning to receive southerly storms typically associated with El Niño. During the 97/98 ski season, El Nino brought Telluride 278 inches, which only includes the months of December to March.
Note: If the resort had included snowfall data for October, November, April, and May, I’d imagine you’d get a number above 35o” at least…
Average Snowfall: 309 inches
97/98 Snow Total: 278 inches (only includes December-March)
When Taos get’s the goods, the goods are abundant. Throughout the 97/98 season, Taos locals reaped the rewards of living in midst of the severe pineapple express flow that pervaded that season and this year, New Mexico’s hidden gem looks like it has a good chance of having a similar season.
Average Snowfall: 305 inches
97/98 Snow Total: 311 inches
Kirkwood has some rad terrain to say the least. The resort is located at a higher elevation that its Lake Tahoe and much like Mammoth receives lighter are more abundant snowfall than its northern neighbors. Also, in 97/98, the resort received 88 more inches than its annual snowfall, which is pretty neat.
Average Snowfall: 500 inches
97/98 Snow Total: 588 inches
Silverton, much like Telluride, benefits from the southerly flow of El Niño. The result is plentiful snowfall that sticks to the high peaks of the Southern San Juans, transforming descents that are normally unskiable into once in a lifetime possibilities. Whatever you do this upcoming season, brave the drive on Hwy 550 and get to Silverton!