Italy has two national holidays that traditionally bookmark the ski season: one around the first week of December and one on April 25.
My home hill is hurrying to open a week ahead of time, the last week of November. It's snowed in the Alps, and the press is full of reports about skiing. The reality is that, yes, it's snowed a little, but the hills that have opened have done so on manmade bases. Eh.
Now, I've skied deep powder in mid-November here. Last season, even. But in the absence of a real dump, why the hurry, why the hype?
And then, why the flagging interest when springtime, often the best season to ski in the Alps, rolls around? Our hill says it will close April 18, a week ahead of the traditional final weekend (and two weeks before May 1, another holiday which sometimes marked the closing of particularly snowy seaons). We almost always have great conditions in late April.
Having read a post or two on the topic, it seems like this happens in the US too, particularly in Colorado. Predictable, I suppose, but frustrating.