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Canadian Rockies Looking Good -- "Best Snow in 30 Years"

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Press Release from Banff-Lake Louise
P.O. Box 1085, Banff, Alberta, Canada T1L 1H9 www.SkiBig3.com
November 26, 2009
BANFF-LAKE LOUISE, Alberta, Canada –

Banff-Lake Louise is wide open and covered in snow! All the lifts are open at The Lake Louise Ski Area and Sunshine
Village, with more available at Mt. Norquay.  The North American chair opens this morning offering access to the
infamous Lone Pine run.



This is the best snow we’ve seen in 30 years, allowing the backside of Lake Louise and Goat’s Eye at Sunshine Village to
be open already, offering tons of terrain, fresh tracks and a lot of powder.

On December 3, 2009, the newly renovated Sunshine Mountain Lodge at Sunshine Village will open 30 new ecoluxurious
rooms. The multimillion dollar wing replacement has not only added luxury to the Lodge, but also lowered the resort’s carbon footprint.

If you can’t join us then there’s still plenty of time to visit, as we’ve got one of the longest ski seasons in North America, from early November to mid May.
post #2 of 16
 I am sure the snow is great, and I hate being in stuck with term projects this November/ December (I take a heavy load in the fall so I can enjoy the winter months), but it was probably better (or at least as good) in 2006.
post #3 of 16
I haven't even skied yet this winter.
post #4 of 16
Sunshine is opening terrain at a faster rate than they did back in 2006 (are you sure you don't mean 2007?,  although the terrain is open earlier than I can remember from any year). I've got nine days in on Sunshine thus far, but I've ducked out for a quick 4 at Whistler before coming back to Alberta for a few more pre-Christmas treats. When Goat's Eye opens the third week of November, I think we may be in line for an epic year.
post #5 of 16
And now I see that Delerium Dive has opened. Earliest opening in 10 years the news release says, I can't recall if they have ever opened it prior to Christmas before.
post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 
Here's that news release:

BANFF-LAKE LOUISE, Alberta, Canada –
The world-famous Delirium Dive opened yesterday – the earliest opening in its ten year history! As one of Sunshine Village’s three freeride zones, the Dive offers some of the most extreme inbounds terrain in North America. This week it was named one of the ‘World’s Scariest Ski Slopes’ by MSN, to add to its many other accolades.

“We’ve had fantastic snow this season enabling us to open the Dive earlier than ever before. Expert skiers and snowboarders will be very happy!” said Dan Markham, of Ski Banff-Lake Louise-Sunshine. Within the Dive’s 600 acres of terrain, natural features include 20 metre cornices, frozen waterfalls, stepped pillow drops, jagged rock spines, and 25 metre cliffs. These natural hazards are unmarked and exist throughout the area.

Skiers and snowboarders need to use good judgment, know their skill level, and understand that mountain conditions may change quickly. Entry is only permitted for those with a shovel, transceiver and buddy.


Delirium Dive at Sunshine Village. By Richard Hallman.

The Dive’s opening adds to the expert terrain already available at The Lake Louise Ski Area and Mt. Norquay. Whitehorn 1, A Gulley and Ptarmigan Shoots are just some of Lake Louise’s terrain already open for expert skiers and riders, with great powder conditions.























Last weekend Mt. Norquay held a special early opening of the North American chair, offering access to the resorts infamous
double-black diamond runs. With some of the best snow in 30 years, the conditons at all three resorts are great on beginner
and intermediate terrain too. After opening in October for weekends only, Mt. Norquay is opening full time tomorrow.
Preparations are well underway for the the new, family-fun Tubing Park, due to debut on December 19.

The Lake Louise Ski Area is proud to host the FIS Winterstart World Cup Women’s Races this Friday to Sunday. The races are free to watch, plus there’ll be music and celebrations all weekend long. This is the chance for everyone to come out and cheer on Olympic hopefuls as they fine tune their skills at Lake Louise!
post #7 of 16
 I am pretty sure it was 06/07. I remember skiing WH2 at Louise in November that year...of course my memory might be a bit fuzzy. The Dive definitely opened before christmas then too.

http://www.onthesnow.com/news/a/419/delirium-at-sunshine

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f6SW93kl_Ew

Always a lot of hype about the "best snow ever" during a good year. Of course every bad year is the result of a "100 year drought". I wonder if sunshine will reach their 900 cm "average" this year?
post #8 of 16
Quote:
Always a lot of hype about the "best snow ever" during a good year.

Absolutely, and I can usually provide the stats to debunk the hype.  But in this case I believe Sunshine is correct.  Sunshine's season-to-date on Dec. 1 was 107 inches.  While it's possible some of that is October, the previous record for November was 98 inches in 1990.  The 77 inches 3 years ago was 4th highest.

Quote:
I wonder if sunshine will reach their 900 cm "average" this year?
39 year average measured at their on-mountain lodge at 7,028 feet is 241 inches.  The record of 357 inches was in 1998-99.   It probably snows more up high (unlikely 50% more though), but with wind and exposure there's no way to legitimately measure up there.

Opening the Dive this early like 3 years ago is the clear cut indicator of how good it is.  There can be no BS/hype in making that decision.   Many years it's not open until February or even March.  I'll be even more impressed if they open Wild West.  I've never skied that, but may make a point to visit Sunshine on my early February trip if it's open.
post #9 of 16
Wow, that really is a great start. As I will likely get spring pass to SSV,  hope the snowfall continues!


WW is a fun area that doesn't get much traffic, though I do prefer the dive overall. My profile pic shows its easiest chute....not overly steep and wide enough easily link turns.

Let me know if you are in the Castle area this winter. I hope we can get the chutes open this year....
post #10 of 16
 I only have 3 ski days this year and the snow has been epic for all of the mountains this year. Fist Marmot than Sunshine followed by Lake louise. And next week off to Kicking horse... And a brand new pair of Volkl Kuro' for the deep pow!
post #11 of 16

The snow has been pretty epic lately - has kept up in fantastic shape and offers awesome skiing & riding...  All lifts are open, weather is great, snow is falling and good times are to be had by all :)

The Banff, Lake Louise and Sunshine Snow & Weather Report for:
Monday 21st December, 2009
  Mt. Norquay Snow Report Lake Louise Ski Area Snow Report Sunshine Village Ski Resort Snow Report
Expected High: -7°C / 19°F -4°C / 25°F -4°C / 25°F
Forecast: Light snow Light snow Cloudy with snow
Conditions: Excellent skiing and riding on packed powder and machine groomed runs.
Tubing park open.
Excellent skiing and snowboarding. 122 runs open. Skiers and riders have one more reason to jump for joy at Sunshine Village – the upper half of our Rogers Terrain Park is now open!
Snowfall in the last 24 Hours: 0 cm / 0 in 5 cm / 2 in 4 cm / 1.6 in
Snowfall in the last # of Days: 3 cm / 1.2 in
in the last 7 days
19 cm / 7.5 in
in the last 7 days
7 cm / 2.8 in
in the last 2 days
Snow Base: 90 cm / 35.4 in
(Upper Mountain)
108 cm / 42.5 in
(Upper Mountain)
120 cm / 47.2 in
(Upper Mountain)
# of Lifts Operating: 5 / 5 9 / 9 12 / 12
Snow Phones: (403) 760-7704 (403) 244-6665 (403) 760-7669
For more information and inquiries please contact us at
E-mail: info@skibig3.com
Phone: (403) 762-4754
Fax: (403) 762-8185
www.SkiBig3.com
Visit our Ski Hub (119 Banff Ave) for current weather conditions, ski area products, services and all your winter needs!
Environment Canada 5 Day Weather Forecast
Environment Canada Satellite Image
Conditions are subject to change without notice.
Mt. Norquay, Lake Louise Ski Area and Sunshine Village - almost 8,000 acres of terrain on one tri-area lift ticket - Banff National Park, Canada.
Reply
post #12 of 16
 Hey Calgarians and Banffites- Looks like conditions are great for early season.  I am going to Lake Louise this week, should I still bring my rock skis for the expert terrain or is coverage adequate?  Thanks & Happy Holidays!
post #13 of 16
Anyone have any suggestions for Discounted lift Passes to Areas such as Fernie, Kimberly, Panorama, Castle, Nakiska besides the usual Craigs list, Costco, etc routes.  After a week in Banff (on the Sunshine/Louise card) have a few more days with a home base of Fairmont Springs (near Invermere) and looking to do day trips frrom there.
Thank you.
post #14 of 16
I've stayed at Fairmont Hot Springs, and it's a nice place, but the only skiing within 2 hours is Panorama and RK Heli.
post #15 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Crocker View Post

I've stayed at Fairmont Hot Springs, and it's a nice place, but the only skiing within 2 hours is Panorama and RK Heli.

Kimberly is close. I haven't been there though, and don't really have an opinion.

Kicking Horse,  the Banff areas, and Fernie are close to 2 hours.
post #16 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Crocker View Post

I've stayed at Fairmont Hot Springs, and it's a nice place, but the only skiing within 2 hours is Panorama and RK Heli.

Lake Louise and Sunshine Village are under 2 hours from Fairmont.  Kimberley is 1 hour.
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