|Originally posted by feal:
That snow site uses some pretty shaky numbers also.
There is no guarantee of standardization of sites, or the methods/times of collection.
Measuring snow totals is a bit of a fools game if a person is trying to nail down real numbers on ski areas with thousands of acres coverage. There aren't many ski areas in the west small enough that a single number gives a number reflective of everything the area has to offer, so generalities are likely in order. The idea of any of the Utah canyon resorts using the 500 inch number is probably reasonable, since they all have areas with advantageous snow accumulation. ...Arguing over it has questionable value, since all resorts have similar situations with areas inside their boundaries having considerably higher or lower snowfall accumulation than advertised.
I don't think I agree with your underlying assumption, Feal.
If "arguing about it has questionable value", would you believe me if I told you that Park City would be as logical a resort for you to visit as Alta, assuming you wanted the absolute best possible chance at skiing deep, fresh powder?
While I don't know about most other resorts, the one I'm best acquainted with, Jackson Hole, measures their snowfall in partnership with snow rangers from the Bridger Teton National Forest.Jackson Hole Mountain Resort Snow Study Sites
A great deal of care has been taken to site the snow study plots in areas on the mountain where wind effects are minimized if not eliminated. The Forest Service shares their snowfall and snowpack data with the US Geological Service, which uses the info to aid in making critical decisions about stream flow projections and water use allocations. It's in everybody's best interest to have the numbers be as dead-on as possible.
I think the site Carvemeister listed looks like about the most objective and comprehensive one I've come across. I'd much rather believe it than most of the other crap I see thrown around (even though the average cited for Jackson Hole isn't as complimentary as I'd like to see).